Irvine man admits to defrauding up to $1.5 million in romance, other scams

An Irvine man has admitted to defrauding former romantic partners and friends of up to $1.5 million, pleading guilty this week to federal wire fraud and money laundering charges.

Ze’Shawn Stanley Campbell, 35, admitted to defrauding at least $250,000 and potentially up to $1.5 million from 10 individuals and nine financial institutions and businesses as part of a plea deal he formally accepted during a Monday afternoon hearing at a federal courthouse in Los Angeles.

Campbell befriended or carried out romantic relationships with his individual victims, using a variety of lies about owning successful businesses or having multi-million dollar bank accounts in order to convince them he was wealthy and reliable, according to court filings.

Campbell falsely claimed to have owned a lucrative chain of gyms in Texas, several McDonald’s restaurants, a security business with military connections and a home renovation business, according to prosecutors.

He also lied about being a Navy Seal who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, prosecutors allege, and being a successful bitcoin investor.

After gaining their trust, Campbell would ask the friends or romantic partners for money, claiming it was for medical bills, real estate investments, bitcoin purchases or business expenses.

According to prosecutors, Campbell convinced people to pull the funds from their bank accounts or retirement and then signed fraudulent statements promising to pay them back.

Related Articles

Crime and Public Safety |

Suspect in Las Vegas reporter’s death denied bail

Crime and Public Safety |

House panel: Trump’s bills to Secret Service ‘exorbitant’

Crime and Public Safety |

On the stand, Kevin Spacey denies sex abuse accusations

Crime and Public Safety |

Ezra Miller pleads not guilty to Vermont burglary charges

Crime and Public Safety |

Justice Dept. seeks end to arbiter’s review of Mar-a-Lago papers

If someone refused to give him money or cut off the funds, Campbell would use their name without their knowledge to apply for bank loans or credit cards, prosecutors added.

They allege Campbell actually used the money to buy luxury items, to make payments on cars he had leased or purchased under his victims’ names or pay down his own personal debt or expenses.

In one instance, Campbell allegedly solicited a $61,452 check from one victim, claiming he was going to invest it in Bitcoin on the victim’s behalf.

Instead, prosecutors said, Campbell put the money into his own bank account, then made payments on a BMW and a Mercedes-Benz he leased under a different victim’s name.

The initial indictment against Campbell also accused him of bank fraud and aggravated identity theft, charges that were dropped as part of the plea deal.

Campbell faces up to 30 years in federal prison, according to prosecutors. He is scheduled to return to court for sentencing on Jan. 9.

Share the Post:

Related Posts