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Hub cancer woman may plead guilty of fraud

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By Jim Smith

BOSTON — The trial of Kristen Clougherty, the woman who allegedly faked cancer in order to swindle thousands of dollars out of unsuspecting residents of South Boston and Dorchester, has been postponed in order to allow her to make a plea offer on Oct. 4.

Prosecutors allege that Clougherty, who is 26, told friends late in 1998 that she had ovarian cancer and needed money for experimental treatment outside of Massachusetts.

In June 1999, she amassed more than $40,000 for herself from a fund-raiser at the Old Colony Yacht Club in Dorchester. Prosecutors say she then spent much of that money on trips, a new car, student loans, liposuction and a downpayment for breast-enlargement surgery.

In August 1999, Clougherty began organizing a road race in South Boston to further benefit herself. She sent out fund-raising letters proclaiming that she was "battling ovarian cancer every day."

In September 1999, investigators, acting on tips, checked with medical facilities named by Clougherty and concluded that she had never been seen for cancer treatment.

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Assistant district attorney Jeremy Silverfine said his office has gathered "overwhelming evidence" against Clougherty and that witnesses are prepared to testify against her. The details of Clougherty’s proposed plea agreement are not known.

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