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“Cancer faker” story comes to an appropriately weird close

Screen shot from a Facebook group page for Demanding Ashley Anne Kirilow Be Held Accountable (Image: Facebook)

Last year, Toronto’s press was all over the bizarre story of Ashley Anne Kirilow, the young woman from Burlington who shaved her head and eyebrows to fake the appearance of someone undergoing intense chemotherapy, and who managed to bilk around $12,000 from well-wishers. That story came to a close yesterday as Kirilow pleaded guilty to the last counts against her in court. The conditions of her sentence are, appropriately enough, as “interesting” as the crime itself.

According to the Toronto Star:

Kirilow, 23, who is now living in the psychiatric ward of Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital in Burlington, pleaded guilty Thursday to outstanding fraud charges and was given a 15-month conditional sentence without jail time. She had previously pleaded guilty to one charge of fraud over $5,000….

Jointly submitted by the Crown and defence, and accepted by Justice Fred Forsythe, the sentence calls for 10 months of house arrest and five months under strict curfew, plus two years probation and 100 hours of community service. Kirilow is also barred from soliciting donations or canvassing for any charitable organization.

So, she avoided prison but is currently “serving house arrest” in a psychiatric ward, so it’s not like she’s free to go or anything. She’s required to spend 100 hours serving the community, but can’t volunteer at a charity where she’d have to handle money. A fair precaution, but these kinds of sentencing conditions seem to crop up more in cases with sexual offenders than in common fraud. But then again, the whole fascination with this fraud is that it wasn’t the least bit “common.”

Woman who faked cancer sentenced to 10 months house arrest [Toronto Star]
Cancer faker Kirilow spared jail [CBC]
• Ontario woman who faked cancer receives conditional sentence [Globe and Mail]