‘Mercenary’ con artist scammed dozens of Seattle LGBTQ comics and scenes with false medical bill lies and other mind-boggling stories, prosecutors say
A suspected con artist has been accused of defrauding dozens of Seattle LGBTQ comics and scenes over half a million dollars with fake stories about multiple sclerosis and the need for help with the costs of schooling and to release a brother to prison, prosecutors said.
Sabrina Taylor, 40, of Tacoma, Wash., Has been charged with four counts of wire fraud after scamming numerous friends and acquaintances over more than $ 550,000 over a three-year period.
“She scandalously took advantage of their hard-earned money – all to satisfy her mercenary greed,” one FBI investigator wrote in a criminal complaint.
A message left with Taylor’s attorney was not immediately returned.
“âI lied. I lied because I have a shopping addiction that I developed as a coping mechanism over years of physical and emotional abuse.“
Prosecutors say that between November 2016 and July 2019, Taylor approached several people she met online out of a common interest in comics, cartoons and video games. They say she fooled many into giving him money to help buy medicine for her multiple sclerosis, pay her school fees and help her brother get out of prison.
Taylor told her alleged victims that she would be able to repay them later when she got a bonus for her job at a cancer research center, or when she received payment on a dispute settlement with a local bank or his parents’ money.
But investigators say Taylor did not have multiple sclerosis and his tuition was almost entirely covered by loans and scholarships. They also said that her brother had never been in jail.
In the end, Taylor never paid the money back, prosecutors said. Taylor later admitted to a victim that she lied about her life story, according to court documents, citing messages she sent to the person.
âI lied. I lied because I have a shopping addiction that I developed as a coping mechanism over years of physical and emotional abuse,â the post reportedly read.
A blog called SabrinaTaylorScams, which was written by someone who said she was duped and also posted testimonials from other people who said they were scammed in the same way, said Taylor targeted many members of Seattle’s LGBTQ community. At one point, the blog said Taylor had spent time in Japan and allegedly took money from the people who lived there.
A message sent to the blogger was not immediately returned.
After his first appearance in federal court in the Western District of Washington, the judge ordered Taylor to surrender his passport.
Taylor faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted, prosecutors said.