Woman who catfished elderly man may have been catfished herself

Jana Beth Rocha (Photo courtesy Abilene Police)

ABILENE, Texas - An Abilene woman accused of catfishing an elderly man in Indiana may have been catfished herself.

According to court documents, Larry W. Jordan, 73, of Greenwood, Indian was having an online romance with "Cathy Woodart Smith" -- a woman he never met and who he thought lived in Virginia.

Smith said her husband - Antonio - had recently died and she was about to inherit his $80 million estate. She convinced Jordan to send $60,000 to a representative of the law firm in Abilene that was handling the estate.

On Oct. 11, Jordan mailed a cashier’s check for $60,000 to “Jana Rocha” who lived in the 3400 block of FM 1750. After Jordan sent the check, his “girlfriend” stopped communicating and he “began to suspect he had been scammed.” He called his bank which confirmed the check had been deposited in Abilene.

Police say Rocha deposited the check into her bank account on Oct. 16. Four days later, she withdrew $30,000. The rest was transferred from her account over 15 separate transactions.

On Nov. 30, police searched Rocha’s house on FM 1750.

Rocha said she wired the money to man in the United Arab Emirates who she believed was her boyfriend, but had never met. Police say she showed them evidence of the wire transfers.

Rocha was charged with exploitation of an elderly individual. She is in jail on $40,000 bond.

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