London, Dec 6 (ANI): A woman in Britain has conned a number of well-wishers out of hundreds of pounds after she claimed that she was fatally ill with a brain tumour, bone cancer and leukaemia.
Terri Edkins, 23, from Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, who shaved her hair off and wore a headscarf to mimic the appearance of a real cancer sufferer, even managed to con her husband Lawrence, 24.
She told her three young children, friends and family that she had only six months to live, and her husband helped in arranging fundraising events to pay for a revolutionary 25,000 pounds treatment in the US that she said she needed.The couple also brought their wedding day forward to October last year after she claimed she had been diagnosed with a brain tumour and bone cancer that summer, and later with leukaemia as well.
But she has now been charged with three counts of fraud, and is known to have raised at least 1,380 pounds at fundraising events including a charity football match and a head shave by her father-in-law.
The football match in June, arranged by her husband, raised 580 pounds, and Edkins thanked the people who had helped her.
"All I want is more time with my children and my husband. If I wasn't married or had children then I'm certain I would have just given up by now," the Daily Mail quoted her as having said.
"But they said six months nearly a year ago and I'm still here, so every day is a real bonus. And I'm really glad that the children are still too young to understand what's happening. That also keeps me going.
"I'm really grateful to everyone who is trying so hard because this is basically my last shot," she stated.
Her stepfather-in-law, Paul Gibbs, had his long hair shorn off the previous month, raising another 800 pounds.
Before her appearance in court was adjourned because of snow, Edkins used her Facebook page to announce that she was pregnant with her fourth child.
But once news of the charges against her emerged, the couple began receiving threats.
"We could not believe it. Loads of people have helped her. Now we've had to go around them all telling them what has happened," her mother-in-law Susan Gibbs, 61, said.She said her son would wait for Edkins outside the hospital when she supposedly had chemotherapy.
"Lawrence knew nothing about this. He's shocked and angry. She had him running round like a headless chicken," she added.
He remains with Edkins but is said to be considering leaving her.
Edkins will appear at Lincoln Magistrates' Court next month on charges relating only to St John's Ambulance, Tesco, who donated shirts to the football, and Gainsborough Lions club. She is accused of defrauding them of 175.78 pounds. (ANI)