Gambling addict who faked cancer sentenced to 3 years
Published Friday, January 28, 2011 9:43AM PST
A B.C. gambling addict who faked cancer to dupe her husband, in-laws and friends out of hundreds of thousands of dollars is going to prison.
Langford resident Tina Michele Sammons was arrested in November on four counts of fraud over $5,000. She pleaded guilty in a Victoria court, and was sentenced Thursday to 36 months in jail, less two months for time served.
Sammons received roughly $350,000 since early 2009 after telling her family she was in a losing battle with the deadly disease and required costly private cancer treatments in the U.S.
She was exposed after her brother-in-law grew suspicious and hired a private investigator to check up on her claims.
By the time she was arrested, her parents-in-law had already contributed roughly $280,000 to pay for cancer treatments Sammons never received, putting themselves $100,000 in debt.
Sammons, who has a five-year-old daughter, has also been ordered to pay restitution to her victims.
In December, a 21-year-old Ontario woman was convicted of defrauding co-workers of more than $5,000 by pretending to have lung and stomach cancer.
She faced a maximum sentence of 14 years, but was given six months house arrest, probation and 100 hours of community service.