Essence Fest Scammer Ordered To Pay $94,000 In Restitution

Gavel In Front Of Row Of Law Books

A woman who scammed almost 100 Essence Fest attendees last year will pay $94,000 in restitution.

The Jefferson Parish district attorney says Nekeshia Washington was given the order after pleading guilty earlier this month.

Washington used her company, OBL Travel, to convince 98 people that she was booking vacation packages for them to attend the 2018 Essence Festival, but that was all a scam.

While some minor services were provided, many customers were left without hotel rooms, tickets, VIP passes and even travel insurance that they had paid for.

She is said to have deposited more than $240,000 into her business's bank account, which was used for personal expenses.

Washington will also spend nine years in jail and pay $1,300 in court fees.

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