A.G. Schneiderman Announces Guilty Plea Of Former Orange County Resident Posing As A "Dying Bride" For Felony Fraud

Town Of Montgomery Bride Faces Sentencing For Faking Terminal Illness To Scam Mid-Hudson Community Members Out Of Thousands Of Dollars

Schneiderman: Vega Now Will Be Held Accountable For Profiting Off Of New Yorkers’ Generosity

ORANGE COUNTY - Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced that Jessica Vega, 25, formerly of Montgomery, NY, pleaded guilty to fraudulently posing as a terminally ill bride to receive thousands of dollars from citizens and others from the Mid-Hudson region. Vega pleaded guilty to one count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, and one count of Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Third Degree. Vega will be sentenced May 15 by Judge Robert Freehill in Orange County Court.

Vega has been remanded to Orange County jail until her sentencing date. Vega is required to pay $13,368.48 in restitution to victims of her scam.

“By pretending to have a terminal illness, Vega inexcusably took advantage of the community's hearts and minds, and profited off of their generosity,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “Now that this individual has pleaded guilty to committing this fraud, she will be held accountable for fleecing the public through lies and deception.”

In the spring of 2010, Vega claimed that she was stricken with terminal cancer and had only a few months to live. She asked for a dream wedding and received her wishes from citizens and others in the Mid-Hudson region. She was married in May 2010 and went to Aruba for her honeymoon with expenses paid for by members of the Mid-Hudson community touched by her story.

It was subsequently discovered that Jessica Vega was neither stricken with terminal cancer nor dying, as she had led everyone to believe. The Attorney General also thanked the New York State Police for their assistance with this case.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Emmanuel Nneji under the supervision of Deputy Bureau Chief Stephen Maher, Bureau Chief Gail Heatherly and Executive Deputy Attorney General for Criminal Justice Nancy Hoppock.