Chesterton Tribune


ISP: Gary woman charged with running fraudulent adoption referral service

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A Gary woman has been charged with multiple felonies and misdemeanors after the Indiana State Police said that she operated as an unauthorized adoption facilitator.

Lynn M. Ellis—also known as Lynn Smith—42, was charged with one count of profiting from an adoption; two counts of unauthorized adoption advertising; 14 counts of unauthorized adoption facilitation; and 14 counts of fraud.

According to police, in January 2011 a criminal investigation was begun after the ISP received information that Ellis was advertising adoption services on the Internet.

“Two websites, Tinkerbell Adoption Referral and The Pregnancy Choices, were run by Ellis offering services for the facilitation of adopting children,” police said. “Individuals (throughout the United States) seeking adoption would pay a fee believing they were beginning the process of being paired with an adoptive mother. No adoption was ever concluded from these transactions.”

“Further investigation revealed that Ellis is not a licensed adoption facilitator with the State of Indiana or her websites,” police also said. “Indiana state law doesn’t allow a person to facilitate or be involved in adoption without being licensed.”

The investigation was conducted by First Sgt. Jeffery Matson.





Posted 12/20/2012