NEW YORK (PIX11)—A New York woman has been charged with fraud after she lied about having terminal cancer so she could bag a dream wedding and free honeymoon, officials said.
According to New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, 25-year-old Jessica Vega was indicted Monday on five counts of grand larceny and one count of scheme to defraud.
myeloid leukemia. Her last supposed "dying wish" was to marry Michael O'Connell, the father of her toddler daughter.
After receiving media coverage and an outpouring of symphony from friends and complete strangers, community leaders rallied to help the "dying" local woman, finding her a dress, donating funds for a dream wedding and even footing the bill for a honeymoon.
Vega went on to marry O'Connell in a lavish celebration in May 2010. Just four months later, it was discovered Vega concocted her supposed health dilemma when her own husband grew suspicious and called her doctor's office. The office informed him she wasn't even a patient there.
The story soon unraveled and prompted Vega's indictment a year and a half later.
"By pretending to have a terminal illness, Vega inexcusably took advantage of the community's hearts and minds, and profited off of their generosity," Schneiderman said. "Our office will hold this individual accountable for fleecing the public through lies and deception."