Michigan Woman’s Cancer Scam Exposed

cancerSara Ylen, a 38-year-old woman from Lexington, Michigan was sentenced on Wednesday in another case of fraud inloving fake cancer. She was given a one-year-sentence, to be served in combination with her current five-year-sentence. Though her cancer scam has been exposed, she plead no contest in court.

Ylen created quite a stir when she faked having cancer. Not only did she fool her family into believing that she was sick, but she also scammed insurance companies and innocent people. She tugged at people’s heartstrings to collect their money. Even after she was exposed the first time, she continued on with the scam and managed to use the fake cancer story to collect more free money.

She claimed she had cervical cancer as a result from sexual assault that occurred in 2011. The insurance companies paid out roughly $100,000 for her medical expenses. Apparently, she forged medical records and used hospital stationary to trick the insurance company into paying out for services that were never rendered.

She claims she was treated at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Zion, III. The hospital later told authorities that they had no record of her as a patient and could not verify if she had cancer or not. Now she owes Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan $122,000 in faked medical bills, which mostly included costs associated with hospice care.

Even after all of this happened, Ylen continued to lie about having cancer. She scammed more innocent people in 2012 when she attended a spaghetti dinner that was a fundraiser in her honor. She strolled in the Crosswell Weslayan Church in a wheelchair, hoping to gain more sympathy. She tricked the people from the small towns of northern Michigan into donating a total of $10,800 to pay her bills.

Ylen’s stream of lies began years ago when she falsely accused several men of raping her. In the case of James Grissom, she claimed that he raped her in broad daylight and it resulted in cervical cancer. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison at that time. He was released in 2012 when the judge threw out the case and the charges as evidence came to light that she had made false accusations before. The evidence was not available at the time of his trial. After spending 10 years in prison for something he did not do, he has been present in the courtroom proceeding to see what Ylen “gets away with.”

This Michigan woman is not the first person to fake cancer though. Others have run a similar scam to collect money, win a dream wedding or simply get attention and sympathy.

Ylen offered no explanation for her actions in the Sanilac County courtroom in January. On Wednesday, she sat quietly in court and did not apologize for faking cancer or fooling everyone. The woman who everyone was led to believe was suffering from cancer and could not afford her bills has been exposed. The scam has sent Ylen back to jail. Though the one-year-sentence may seem light given the circumstances, it is the maximum amount of the time that the judge could give according to Michigan law.

By Tracy Rose


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