Ann Leuser duped producer into believing she could provide behind-the-scenes access to Democratic party candidate’s presidential campaign.
A woman has been jailed after duping film-makers into believing she could get them behind-the-scenes access to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
Ann Leuser fraudulently claimed to have a close connection with the former US secretary of state and tried to enter into a contract for a fly-on-the-wall documentary that proposed a series of payments totalling £120,000.
The 56-year-old, of Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire, even paid an actress £5,000 to impersonate Clinton’s director of communications Jennifer Palmieri over the phone.
During a period of 10 months, Leuser sent fraudulent emails to a producer claiming to be from members of the Clinton campaign team. She received several all-expenses-paid trips to London and was flown to New York under the premise of getting an access letter signed.
It had been agreed that if Leuser presented an access letter from the presidential candidate to the UK-based production team, she would be paid £30,000 immediately and would receive three further payments of £30,000 during the filming process.
In October 2015, Leuser claimed she had travelled to the Democratic party convention in Las Vegas, but actually remained in New York for the entire trip and forged an access letter in an attempt to fulfil the contract.
Someone from the production company then visited the Brooklyn headquarters of the Clinton campaign for a meeting in late 2015. It was found there was no legitimate access letter, there had never been any negotiations with the Clinton campaign team and Leuser was not known to anyone there.
The company reported her to the City of London police in February 2016. Accompanied by a Police Scotland officer, Leuser’s property was searched in April 2016 when phone and receipts were seized detailing her contact with the documentary producer and team. No evidence was found of a friendship between Leuser and Clinton.
During questioning, Leuser maintained she had a close connection with the presidential candidate and her campaign team but refused to comment further.
Leuser was jailed for 44 months at Inner London crown court on Friday for fraud by false representation.