Used Facebook to extort money from victims
MUSKOGEE – Amber Nicole Pickelsimer, 44, of Healdton, has entered a guilty plea to an Information charging her with one count of Wire Fraud, according to The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Oklahoma.
The Information alleged that between February 2019 and August 2020, Pickelsimer, for the purpose of executing or attempting to execute a scheme to defraud, caused to be transmitted, by means of wire communication in interstate commerce, a message through Facebook Messenger from a fictitious Facebook account to the victim’s Facebook account.
The charges arose from an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The investigation revealed that Pickelsimer created two fictitious Facebook accounts and used those accounts to extort the victim, demanding that the victim deliver large quantities of cash to a drop site. Pickelsimer eventually defrauded the victim of over $1,000,000.
Because Pickelsimer operated in the Eastern District of Oklahoma and Facebook maintains its servers outside of the state of Oklahoma, Pickelsimer’s Facebook messages qualified as federal wire fraud.
The Honorable Gerald L. Jackson, U.S. Magistrate Judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, accepted the plea and ordered the completion of a presentence investigation report. Pickelsimer posted a personal recognizance bond at the conclusion of the plea hearing.
Assistant United States Attorney Kara Traster represented the United States.