One woman was jailed for faking ovarian cancer and fraud against people over £ 52,000. 42-year-old mom Nicole Elkabbas started a crowdfunding campaign on GoFundMe claiming she had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer and needed money for treatment. The money her well-wishers raised, more than £ 52,000, was transferred to her own bank account, which she instead spent on gambling and paying off her lavish lifestyle.
The Daily Mail reports that she bought a £ 3,592 luxury box to watch a single Tottenham Hotspur match. The woman has been detained for two years and nine months. A jury found her on charges of fraud related to misrepresenting having cancer to receive money for treatment between February and August 2018 and possession of criminal property in connection with the charitable donations.
Judge Mark Weekes said the Elkabbas were “cunning and manipulative” and “started a lengthy, involved and ingenious deception of people”. He told Elkabbas that she played and enjoyed shopping trips and luxuries in Italy and Spain at the expense of her (donor).
He added that such cases “inspire suspicion among nonprofit members of the public” and “encourage skepticism and even cynicism in an area that can badly afford”.
Elkabbas created a donation page titled “Nicole Needs Our Help” and made it look like her mother set it up. The website described Nicole as a ‘beautiful daughter; and loving mother to her dear 11 year old son. ‘It has also been mentioned that the trauma of having three surgeries and six rounds of chemotherapy has created financial problems and they are unable to pay for a drug in Spain that may be the’ only way they can be saved can be”.
Prosecutor Ben Irwin said there had been extensive planning and research into cancer and drug treatment to tell detailed lies. The updates on the website included the description of how she responded to IP chemo and platelet transfusions, and they toyed with the audience’s emotions by posting pictures with her son. Irwin said it was “carefully designed to get people to give money”.
While some people paid directly through GoFundMe donations, others sent the funds straight to their bank account.