Woman charged in $2.6m fraud

HAVE you been ripped off by an investment scheme run out of the Coffs Harbour area between 2004 and 2006?

If so, police want to hear from you.

They expect the alleged scam could run into millions of dollars.

They say numerous people invested funds in the business operation but when some of them asked for their money back, the invested funds were allegedly not returned.

Coffs Harbour detectives who have spent the past five months investigating the matter struck gold on Wednesday when they travelled to the Lake Macquarie district.

They raided a house at Dora Creek and seized numerous documents.

A Dora Creek woman, 65, who used to live in the Coffs Harbour area, went to Toronto Police Station later that day.

Detectives questioned her and subsequently charged her with eights counts of misappropriating funds (more than $1.4m) and eight counts of obtaining benefit by deception (in excess of $1.2m).

She was granted conditional bail to appear in Toronto Local Court on October 3.

"We're of the belief there are more people in the local community who may have invested with this particular person," acting Coffs/Clarence crime manager, acting inspector Peter O'Reilly said.

"If people believe they have fallen victim to this woman in that time period, they should contact us."

To help with the ongoing investigation, contact Coffs Harbour detectives on 6652 0299, or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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