An Essex County woman was charged with defrauding elderly victims through a lottery scam in which victims were falsely told that they had won large sums of money, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced today.
Federal officials said Ms. Shanile Lyle, 27, of Orange was arrested Monday and charged by complaint with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
Officials said she appeared by videoconference before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael A. Hammer and was released on a $200,000 unsecured bond.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
In 2018, several elderly victims received telephone calls alerting them that they had won large sums of money and various other prizes.
The victims were informed that they would have to pay taxes on these winnings and, as a result, sent numerous checks totaling at least $675,000 to Lyle and her conspirators.
Lyle deposited these funds into bank accounts she controlled and transferred portions of the money to her conspirators.
The count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the pecuniary gain to the defendant or twice the gross loss involved, whichever is greater.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr. in Newark, with the investigation leading to the charges.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Vera Varshavsky of the U.S. Attorney’s Cybercrimes Unit in Newark.