Dating, financial advice vlogger charged in house flipping theft case | #bumble | #tinder | #pof | #onlinedating


Marie watched her first “Michaela Pink” YouTube video last year, not knowing that doing so would put her on a path to lose $21,000.

“How to Use Your Tax Return Money Wisely” sparked interest for Marie, who had recently come into money after a relative’s death. She set up two consultations with the vlogger and businesswoman, who doles out advice on dating and finances, and Michaela Pink suggested she invest in real estate, Marie said.

Months after dumping thousands into a house-flip – all facilitated by Pink — Marie realized she was the victim of a scam, she said. Pink had stopped taking her calls.

Pink, whose real name is Mikki Lynn Fox, was arrested in Harris County in February on a separate theft charge. The victim in that case alleged that they, too, were conned out of $35,000 in a house flip which never occurred, according to court records.

“This person was just very reassuring,” said Marie, who requested anonymity amid what she said was an embarrasing situation. “I realize now those are the tactics of a predator.”

Fox, 40, posted a $10,000 personal bond after her Feb. 25 arrest, court records show. Prosecutors expect more cases to follow and are investigating six other victims’ claims, including Marie’s, Harris County Assistant District Attorney Sheila Hansel said.

Fox’s attorney did not respond to a request for comment.

The man in the existing Harris County court case met Fox through a friend of a friend who was an online fan of Pink, according to probable cause documents. After talking on the phone, they met in person and entered into a contract where the man invested in a house that Fox said she owned and was flipping in Oklahoma, Hansel said.

He would be paid interest while construction was ongoing, and after, he would get his $35,000 investment back, Pink allegedly told him.

The man did receive a total of $3,100 in interest payments over the following months, but those came to a halt. After several months of requesting his payments and being promised them in July and October 2020, the woman stopped responding, Hansel said.

An investigation that followed showed Fox received the money but didn’t spend it, according to the prosecutor. She also didn’t own the house in Oklahoma to start.

Marie said her case was similar. Fox told her to invest the $21,000 into a property, upon which she would receive a one-year lender agreement along with a promissory note and a copy of the deed. She would then receive 8% per month of the investment she had applied to the house, and could determine at year’s end whether to reinvest the money or take it back, she said.

After making her investment in April 2020 and seeing no return, she reported the case to Fort Bend County authorities, where Fox had been located at the time, Marie said. Harris County is now investigating the case.

Hansel said online real estate scams are “tragically common.”

“Real estate investing is ripe for fraud,” she said. “Please, do your research. Verify what they’re saying through public records, online research … Do your homework and don’t go blindly in or get bowled over by a strong personality.”

samantha.ketterer@chron.com



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