Skip to content
Link copied to clipboard

She faked cancer to get out of jail

4-month sentence is now 5 years

A NORTHEAST Philadelphia woman who faked having life-threatening cancer to delay reporting to prison in 2007, for stealing money from the bank accounts of elderly customers, was sentenced yesterday to almost five years in federal prison.

After LeAnn Moock, 35, of Parkwood Manor, received a four-month sentence in 2007 and was permitted to self-report to prison, she began an elaborate scam, prosecutors said.

They said that Moock fooled her own attorney and the presiding judge into believing she was in constant pain, being treated with extensive chemotherapy, radiation and surgery, and was expected to die soon.

Prosecutors said that a day before she was to report to prison in August 2007, she sent her attorney an email claiming she had visited her doctor's office that day and learned that she had a mass in her stomach.

As part of the scam, Moock concocted a realistic-looking letterhead from Temple University Hospital to fabricate letters from a purported doctor, in addition to email and telephone accounts in case anyone from the criminal-justice system tried to contact the fake doctor.

The missives from the fake doctor revealed Moock's efforts to ensure that she was portrayed sympathetically, and often emphasized her supposedly low chances of survival.

In a Jan. 14, 2008, letter, the fake doctor wrote: "I've seen patients fight and win, but more times than not, when the cancer is this advanced and not responding to treatment, it is a losing battle."

During her three-year scam, she not only formed a new romantic relationship, but also gave birth to a child, had breast augmentation and a tummy tuck, and stole her father's driver's license and personal information to obtain more than $56,000 in bank loans for herself.

Moock pleaded guilty in November to obstruction, bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. She has been in federal custody since October.