Cleveland mom charged in nationwide Facebook scam is fighting extradition to Ohio

Cleveland mom charged in nationwide Facebook scam is fighting extradition to Ohio

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - It looks like alleged Facebook scammer Zienup Sbeih-Maddox won't be leaving Las Vegas.

At least not yet.

On Monday, the 24-year-old Cleveland woman told a Clark County, Nevada judge that she plans to fight extradition to Ohio, where she has been charged with multiple felonies.

Zienup Sbeih-Maddox in a Nevada courtroom Monday morning (Source: KLAS)

Sbeih-Maddox was arrested by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department on August 1, more than a year after the Cleveland Division of Police charged her with theft and telecommunication fraud and issued a warrant for her arrest. Her next court date in Nevada is scheduled for October 25.

Cleveland 19 Chief Investigator Carl Monday was first to expose Sbeih-Maddox in a hidden camera investigation in June 2017.

Sbeih-Maddox is accused of using Facebook to scam hundreds of people across the United States and Canada out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. She ran a Facebook group called "Zee's Place," where she sold everything from heavily discounted baby products to Disney vacations.

Many of the victims who belonged to the group say Sbeih-Maddox never delivered the goods they had purchased.

Investigators say Sbeih-Maddox pulled in over $200,000 as part of the scam. At the same time, she was living in public housing in Cleveland and paying less than $80 per month in rent.

According to sources close to the criminal investigation, Sbeih-Maddox visited Dubai, Italy and Mexico in early 2017, before a warrant was issued for her arrest. In addition to the international destinations, we're told she also traveled within the United States, including a trip to the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida

The Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority Police Department also launched its own investigation into Sbeih-Maddox in 2017. On September 25, 2017, she was indicted by a Cuyahoga County grand jury on felony charges of grand theft, theft and tampering with records related to housing and food stamp fraud.

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A Cuyahoga County judge signed off on a second warrant for her arrest, this time through the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Office.

It was the Cuyahoga County warrant that popped up when authorities in Las Vegas arrested Sbeih-Maddox last month.

While we still don't know where Sbeih-Maddox spent most of the 12 months that she had been wanted by police, Cleveland 19 News has confirmed that she had been living under an alias at a Las Vegas youth homeless shelter since May.

Speaking under the condition of anonymity, current and former residents of the Shannon West Homeless Youth Center said Sbeih-Maddox was using the name Spencer Stevenson. They say the 24-year-old told residents that she was 18 and that she had recently been kicked out of foster care in California.

The officer in charge of CMHA's investigation recently traveled to Las Vegas and interviewed Sbeih-Maddox. CMHA Police Chief Andrés González said Monday that the department is planning to take the case back to the grand jury to seek addition charges against her.

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