Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

More charges against Brooksville woman in lottery scam

BROOKSVILLE — Early in their investigation, Brooksville detectives believed Doris Siegel was the victim of a Nigerian lottery scam long before she started conning others out of more than $1 million with a similar scheme.

Now, they believe Siegel might have known what she was doing all along. And that she might have had help.

Brooksville police filed two more felony charges against Siegel on Friday, accusing her of knowingly — and painstakingly — creating schemes to defraud friends, neighbors and even her pastor out of more than $1 million.

"Our thought is that she's been doing this for awhile," Brooksville police Chief George Turner said. "This 'confused old lady' spent a lot of time and trouble structuring these financial transactions."

Siegel, 79, faces charges of money laundering and structuring financial transactions in addition to a previous charge of organized fraud. She remained at the Hernando County Jail on Friday in lieu of $50,000 bail.

According to police, Siegel transferred nearly $1.1 million in small amounts to sidestep state and federal transaction reporting requirements. Siegel is also accused of forging the signature of her roommate, Pauline Price, to conceal some of the transactions. Price died several years ago, police said.

"We believe a lot of those transactions happened right after (Price) died," Turner said. "We don't think (Price) had anything to do with this stuff."

But as detectives continue to interview victims and comb through bank records and other documents, they are considering whether Siegel had some help organizing these scams.

"We're looking into that," Turner said.

Siegel came to the attention of police in 2004, when she was apparently duped by the Nigerian lottery scam. She went to police, who told her that she had likely been victimized based on the correspondence she had received.

Siegel then used that information and deception, police said, to fraudulently obtain money from other people. Inside her home, police said, they found reams of paperwork detailing how to operate a lottery scam.

According to police, Siegel approached several victims from January 2008 through this month and asked for money, claiming she had won a lottery in Holland.

Additionally, Turner said investigators have evidence that Siegel convinced a friend to donate $14,000 in 2001 for a Guatemalan mission that does not exist.

Joel Anderson can be reached at joelanderson@sptimes.com or (352) 754-6120. You can follow Joel on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jandersontimes.

More charges against Brooksville woman in lottery scam 04/16/10 [Last modified: Friday, April 16, 2010 6:27pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Search for missing Army helicopter crew suspended in Hawaii

    Military

    HONOLULU — Officials have suspended the search for five Army soldiers who were aboard a helicopter that crashed during offshore training in Hawaii last week.

    Water safety officials hand over possible debris from an Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash to military personnel stationed at a command center in a harbor, Wednesday in Haleiwa, Hawaii, a day after. an Army helicopter with five on board crashed several miles off Oahu's North Shore. Officials  suspended the search for five Army soldiers in a helicopter crash during offshore training in Hawaii on Monday. [Associated Press]
  2. Rubio praises Trump for 'excellent' speech on Afghanistan

    Blogs

    Sen. Marco Rubio praised President Donald Trump's "excellent" speech on Afghanistan. Sen. Bill Nelson was less effusive but agreed with the goal.

  3. Gov. Rick Scott blasts report of shifting words on Charlottesville

    Blogs

    Gov. Rick Scott, one of the most scripted politicians in modern Florida history, said Monday that ‘both sides” bore blame for Charlottesville.

  4. Record $417 million awarded in lawsuit linking baby powder to cancer

    Nation

    LOS ANGELES — A Los Angeles jury on Monday ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay a record $417 million to a hospitalized woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in the company's iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene.

    A bottle of Johnson's baby powder is displayed. On Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, a Los Angeles County Superior Court spokeswoman confirmed that a jury has ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $417 million in a case to a woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in the company's iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene. [Associated Press]
  5. Search under way for missing sailors; Navy chief orders inquiry

    Military

    SINGAPORE — The U.S. Navy ordered a broad investigation Monday into the performance and readiness of the Pacific-based 7th Fleet after the USS John S. McCain collided with an oil tanker in Southeast Asian waters, leaving 10 U.S. sailors missing and others injured.

    Damage is visible as the USS John S. McCain steers toward Singapore’s naval base on Monday.