McFakeson spent around $25,000 on a roster of nearly 300 thousand fake followers
A British sales manager has pleaded guilty to committing fraud by creating a fake Twitter account in the name of Lionel Richie, reported BBC.
John McFakeson, who used the account to fake and post forged messages, then solicited around $25,000 from people to buy fake Twitter followers in order to pretend he was a famous celebrity.
Following McFakeson’s court appearance, a judge told him: “Use of such devices as Twitter to procure others to pay your way for pretending to be some person for financial gain is totally unacceptable.”
In total, McFakeson spent around $25,000 on a roster of nearly 300 thousand fake followers.
At a hearing at Leeds Crown Court on Thursday, British conspiracy and fraud charges were placed against a 42-year-old man who admitted the charges.
The court was told that the fraud had gone on for two years and his victims included family members, friends and strangers who wanted to help out in times of need.
McFakeson had used many of Lionel Richie’s songs in the his tweets and would write messages such as “Dear mega Argentinian friend, Love in Peace Lionel,” or “Dear reader, I just like to respond to you all on behalf of @LionelRichie, Love Lionel.”
The messages would then be shared on other accounts for both of the two victims.
According to The Mirror, McFakeson had collected at least 15 thousand followers on account of fake accounts by offering help to groups like animal welfare causes.
A judge said that the court was prepared to put a limit on the sentence to avoid him going to prison but no plea had been made to the figure of one year.
McFakeson also pleaded guilty to attempting to charge the money to “Nuclear Option”, a Kickstarter-type crowd-funding campaign that was set up to help with the medical costs for his 15-year-old son after a life-threatening genetic illness.
“I regret my decisions, I am sorry, I am an idiot,” he said.
It will now be up to a judge to decide the sentence.