PHOENIX - An Arizona man who defrauded elderly people out of hundreds of thousands of dollars is spending the next seven years behind bars.
Kyle Dennis, owner of Red Mountain Holding Company and Internet Advertisement Holding Company, reached out to multiple people between July 2015 and September 2017. He told them he was affiliated with Google and offered web creation services.
Dennis never provided the web creation services and stole $590,820 from investors in Indiana, Washington, Colorado, Minnesota, Montana and Florida, officials said. He claimed he stole the money to pay for his opioid addiction and other personal expenses.
Dennis pled guilty to fraudulent schemes and artifices and theft.
According to a recent report from High Speed Internet, Arizona is among the top five most likely states for a person to become a victim of "catfishing," or becoming a victim of someone pretending they're being someone they're not.
“In a single year, catfished people in the United States lost more than $187 million,” the report said. “That’s an average of more than $15,000 per victim.”
While California lost a total of $30.5 million to “online romance scams,” Arizona victims lost $11,522 per victim, the report said.