New Jersey woman arrested in fake cancer scheme
DELRAN, N.J. (NBC) -- Lori Stilley, 40, of Delran, N.J., was arrested after prosecutors say she lied to family and friends about having cancer and collected more than $10,000 in donations for her treatment.
According to a release from the Burlington County Prosecutor's Office, Stilley told relatives and friends in February of 2011 that she had been diagnosed with Stage 3 bladder cancer and needed to undergo radiation and chemotherapy. She also allegedly told them she did not have health insurance.
A few months later, she sent out a Facebook message announcing her cancer had reached Stage 4.
Fundraisers were organized on her behalf raising $9,400. Prosecutors say Stilley also wrote an e-book on her struggles with cancer, generating more than $3,000 in book sales.
Her family and friends threw a wedding for Stilley, because she allegedly told them she wanted to marry her boyfriend before she died.
Prosecutors say family and friends paid for the wedding, which cost $500 because they negotiated a reduced price with the wedding hall. Stilley then received $1,600 in gift card donations.
Family and friends contacted authorities after becoming suspicious in November 2011 when Stilley posted a message on Facebook that said she believed a miracle was coming and she was postponing hospice care.
The Delran Township Police Department and the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office began investigating and say they found out that Stilley had never been treated or diagnosed with cancer.
Stilley has been charged with Theft by Deception and was released after posting $25,000 bail.