Last month, Jennifer Flynn Cataldo of Birmingham, AL was arrested as the result of some excellent reporting and a joint investigation by the Alabama Attorney General and FBI. Since her arrest, it’s been reported that Cataldo was put on suicide watch; a source close to the investigation says she was suicidal even before her arrest. Safe to say, things weren’t so great for her prior to the investigation, and have only gotten worse since.
Now, the AG’s office has asked to seize just under $2000 from Cataldo’s bank account at USAmeriBank, saying the money is “fruit of the criminal offense.” It was into that same account Cataldo transferred the over $38,000 she raised via two GoFundMe campaigns. That estimate does not include direct cash infusions she received from friends and family (including her parents, who gave their daughter hundreds of thousands to support her through her alleged cancer struggle). In the weeks leading up to her arrest, Cataldo sought a “down payment” on a liver transplant she claimed she needed from people she knew. A federal indictment against Cataldo states she collected over $100,000 in person, online, and by text message from people she knew.
Cataldo has already admitted to faking cancer. She is facing eight counts of wire fraud and seven counts of bank fraud in federal court, as well as two counts of first-degree theft of property on the state level. She is currently being held at the Shelby County Jail, and will appear in court June 8 for a preliminary hearing.