Orange County

Orange County Romance Scammer Pleads Guilty to Federal Charges

An Irvine man has pleaded guilty to federal charges for conning more than $250,000 from former romantic partners and others.

AP Photo/John Raoux

An Irvine man pleaded guilty Monday to federal charges for conning more than $250,000 from former romantic partners and others and using their personal information to obtain credit.

Ze'Shawn Stanley Campbell, 35, entered his plea to one federal count each of wire fraud and unlawful monetary transactions, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Campbell, who in recent years had lived in several cities in LA and Orange counties, will face up to 30 years in federal prison at sentencing on Jan. 9, prosecutors noted.

Over the course of six years, Campbell defrauded almost 20 victims by lying about his wealth, his ownership of various business, his success in investing money, and his service in the military, according to the indictment filed in LA federal court.

Some of the lies Campbell told included falsely saying that he operated successful businesses including McDonald's franchises, a security company, and a chain of gyms in Texas.

He also boosted his stature by falsely telling his victims that he was a successful investor in real estate and Bitcoin, as well as claiming that he served as a Navy SEAL in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, according to the U.S. attorney's office.

After convincing romantic partners and others that he was wealthy, reliable and successful, Campbell asked for money, some of it for loans he claimed he would use to support his businesses and to pay medical bills, according to court documents. In some cases, Campbell obtained money from victims with false claims he would invest their funds.

Prosecutors said Campbell used the funds to support his lifestyle, which included the purchase of luxury items. When some of his victims refused to give or stopped handing over money, he applied for loans and credit cards in their names without their knowledge and then failed to pay off those loans and credit card balances.

Campbell was taken into custody in March 2021 at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport after arriving on an international flight. He was transported to LA to face trial.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Ranee A. Katzenstein and Chief of the Major Frauds Section, will be prosecuting this case.

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