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Queens woman charged with taking part in phony lottery scam: U.S. Attorney

JAMAICA — A woman from southeast Queens was among six people arrested earlier this week and charged with operating a phony lottery that bilked seniors out of hundreds of thousands of dollars, authorities said.

Kimona Peterkin, a 22-year-old who lived in the borough neighborhood of Jamaica, was arrested along with five others on charges they ran a telemarketing scheme that conned dozens of elderly Americans who thought they won a foreign lottery sweepstakes based in the island nation of Jamaica, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said.

The crew allegedly told their victims that in order to claim the prize, they had to first pay fees and taxes, which the co-conspirators then sent to Jamaica, the Manhattan prosecutor said.

Peterkin was charged with three fraud counts, each of which carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, Bharara said.

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