Virgin Islanders Warned To Avoid Lottery Scams Over The Phone Or Internet
PHILADELPHIA – An indictment was filed recently charging six people with running a “Jamaican lottery” scam in the United States between January 2012 and March 2015, which targeted an Upper Darby man among their prey, U.S. States Attorney Zane David Memeger and Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent-in-Charge John P. Kelleghan announced.
Maurice Simmonds, aka “Damion Dash,” 34, Devon A. Grant, aka “The Bachelor,” 55, Majid Morris, 34, Ashley Hicks-Williams, 29, Melissa Duncan, 29, and Warren Chevannes, aka “Dave,” 37, were charged with conspiring to commit mail, bank and wire fraud in a scheme that obtained more than $200,000 from mostly elderly victims with diminished mental capacity.
Simmonds, the alleged organizer and leader of the conspirators, and some of the other members of the conspiracy were also charged with wire fraud and travel fraud as the result of specifically defrauding an elderly resident of the Drexel Hill section of Upper Darby.
According to the indictment, the victims were informed that they had won the “Jamaican lottery,” but that in order to claim their winnings they first needed to pay tens of thousands of dollars for certain “fees.” The victims were repeatedly coerced to provide the conspirators with cash, checks, and property, but never received any winnings from the purported lottery.
If convicted, each defendant faces a substantial prison term, possible fines, special assessments, and supervised release.
The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations, the Delaware County District Attorney’s Criminal Investigation Division Senior Exploitation Unit, and the Delaware County Office of Services for the Aging. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anita Eve.