District of Massachusetts | Canton Woman Sentenced for Online Fraud Conspiracy

BOSTON — A Canton woman was convicted today for her role in a fraud conspiracy that included romance scams and pandemic unemployment scams.

Florence Mwende Musau, 38, was sentenced by US District Court Allison D. Burroughs to 44 months in prison and 30 months’ supervised release. Musau was also ordered to pay about $957,000 in compensation and forego about $350,000 and a Lexus SUV. In 2021, Musau was charged with conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud and pleaded guilty.

Musau engaged in a love scam conspiracy and other online scams designed to trick victims into sending money to bank accounts controlled by her and others. Criminals who commit love scams create fictitious profiles on online dating or social media sites, gain the trust of potential victims, and then instruct those victims to transfer money under false pretenses.

To further the conspiracy, Musau used fake passports in the name of numerous pseudonyms to open bank accounts in and around Boston to receive the proceeds of the love scam. Musau then made large cash withdrawals from these accounts, generally structured in amounts less than $10,000, to circumvent the requirements to detect and report currency transactions. Musau also received the proceeds from fraudulent government pandemic unemployment benefits on behalf of victims. As part of the scheme, Musau used at least three different aliases to open nearly ten fraudulent bank accounts and receive approximately $1 million in fraud proceeds.

This was announced today by United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins and Matthew B. Millhollin, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in New England. Special assistance was provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the US Postal Inspection Service. Assistant US Attorney Ian J. Stearns of Rollins’ Securities, Financial and Cyber ​​Fraud Unit prosecuted the case.

On May 17, 2021, the Attorney General established the COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force to pool the resources of the Department of Justice in partnership with agencies across government to increase efforts to combat and prevent pandemic-related fraud. The task force is increasing efforts to identify and prosecute the most guilty domestic and international criminal actors and assisting agencies tasked with administering fraud prevention assistance programs, including by expanding and incorporating existing coordination mechanisms, identifying resources and techniques for detecting fraudulent actors and their systems, and sharing and utilizing information and lessons learned from previous enforcement efforts. For more information on the Department’s response to the pandemic, visit

Anyone with information about suspected fraud related to COVID-19 may report it by calling the Department of Justice’s National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) hotline at 866-720-5721 or through the NCDF web complaint form at : https://www

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