The United States District Court at St. Loius has sentenced a 49-year-old American woman, Wende Anne Terril, to one year in prison for stealing about $200,000 from her company to help her ‘fiancé’, a Nigerian scammer who conned her in an online romance scam.
According to Sahara Reporter, Wende Anne Terril was sentenced on Friday with an order to pay back the money she stole from her company.
The prosecutors said Terrill wrote five-figure cheques and sent one wire transfer from her employer, Midwest Petroleum, to other accounts between January 27, 2017 to March 31, 2017.
The woman was the company controller and the accounts were associated with companies with which Midwest was not doing business, court documents showed.
The money was almost immediately transferred overseas. Several links in the chain of money transfers had Nigerian connections, prosecutors have said in court documents.
After Terrill left the company, a Midwest official discovered emails between her and others about ‘fiancé’ Santino Gallo, who was supposedly an oil rig worker with outstanding debts.
Prosecutors said the 49-year-old was the victim of a Nigerian romance fraud scheme in which scammers create fake online profiles, develop a romantic relationship with their victims before making series of requests for money until the victim’s finances are exhausted.