Ontario Woman Arrested Over Alleged Sham Cancer

We have previously followed people who either fake being wounded soldiers or cancer patients. Now we can add the name of Ashley Anne Kirilow, 23, of Ontario, Canada. She was arrested for allegedly faking cancer to rake in thousands of dollars in charity donations.

She reportedly shaved her head and eyebrows to support claims that she was going through chemotherapy treatments. On her fingers, she added tattoos “love life” and “won’t quit.” In the end, prosecutors charged that she has gathered roughly $20,000 from both friends and strangers.

She now faces three counts of fraud under $5,000 and two years in jail.

Source: Toronto Star

6 thoughts on “Ontario Woman Arrested Over Alleged Sham Cancer”

  1. lottakatz

    I am not going to get into pharma profit ratios, etc. It’s too complicated, I’ve done it too much, and I don’t have the time for it now, sorry.

    I worked in the industry. They paid me way too much money for what I did. There IS a lot of excess profit in the pharma industry, this is true. But it is also like a lot of other industries in that regard.

    Nevertheless, the points I made and the points you made are not mutually exclusive.

    Also – I have done more reading on the topic you brought up here – and I was wrong and you were right. Gram neg. bacteria with the NDM-1 plasmid are indeed resistant to aminoglycosides and not to (only) two carbapenoms. This IS scary, and contrary to previous patterns of antibiotic resistance.


  2. Gingerbaker, The percentage of cost prescription meds constitutes within the entire cost of medical care is not relevant to the point made in the linked article.

    There is more than enough evidence that states drug sales are the most profitable aspect of medical care, the growth industry within medical care and the aspect of medical care that has the lowest ratio of cost to profit, administration, compensation and research in the medical care industry and this has been the trend for at least the past decade.

    This article has a pie chart that is representative of every pie chart I have seen dating back to the late 19900’s and it shows that the costs break down to 35% marketing, 25% ‘other’ including compensation, manufacturing, labor etc.) 24% profit (and from other charts I looked up that is pure profit, not gross profit) and 15% research. I have seen several other reports but no single slice of the pie differed (in aggregate when broken down further) from this one by more than a few % points.


    Another item I just happened to come across addresses my contention that someone needs to step up regarding research even if it’s the government. Apparently medical research is second in spending only to defense research by the Federal government. While most of it is basic research some of that research is useful to Drug companies and some of it is exclusive to drug research.

    Another factor that speaks to the article I first posted is that most r&D is not for new drugs but tweaks and re-multi- purposing existing drugs. Considering how long it takes to get a drug to market if it is effective and doesn’t fail in trials, we seem to be way behind the curve. Most drugs are not new drugs and this has been the trend since the 1990’s.

    The amazing thing is that even as expensive as R&D is, it still comprises such a small part of the pharma money pie. cost is less important than the relationship to profit, compensation, etc. and how those things relate to the consumer cost of drugs.

    The CBO study done in 2006 is fascinating and here:


  3. lottakatz

    Carbapenems are not our last line of antibiotic defense – aminoglycosides are. I think are are in trouble, but it isn’t doomsday just yet.

    Another problem with the article is its attitude about pharma’s supposed greedy lack of enthusiasm about antibiotic research. What bullshit.

    Obviously, if the world is coming to end because we lack good antibiotics, there would be a fortune to be made inventing new classes of them. The problem is that inventing new classes of antibiotics ain’t easy anymore, not that pharma is lazy and evil.

    In fact, what we have seen with pharma over the past decade or so is that inventing new classes of any kind of therapy ain’t easy anymore – we have seen far fewer breakthrough drugs of any stripe of late. We have already culled the low-hanging fruit. Diseases today are harder to treat than the ones we have already figured out how to control.

    I used to sell antibiotics. One of the big problems “greedy pharma” has is the rise of the insurance formulary. Inventing a new class of- or a breakthrough drug costs at least 20 to 50 times as much as making a me-too copycat drug. (And we are talking billions of dollars.) The me-too drug, then, can easily afford to charge the insurance formulary less than the breakthrough drug and the breakthrough drug is now not on the formulary. Hence, the insurance system and the generics system is to blame for why pharma is conservative with its research funds. They have to make a lot of profit very fast to recoup the investment before the me-too drug is approved. And the FDA LOVES to approve the first me-too drugs of any class – they sail through with almost no data behind them. Think about THAT!

    All of this to save money and the supposedly HUGE cost of drugs! All drugs put together make up about 10% of our health care dollars. (And it is undoubtedly the most cost-effective 10%). 90% of our health dollars go to doctors and hospitals and insurance companyies. The only reason that anybody cares about the cost of drugs is because for some inexplicable reason, the insurance industry has gotten away with not paying 100% for outpatient drugs, and they come out of our pockets. WHY??? They pay for everything else. Ever think about that?

    So, it all is not as black and white, open and shut as common perception would tell us. And that article you shared is exhibit A.

  4. Mostly off topic but medical: From the Guardian:

    “Are you ready for a world without antibiotics?”

    “The era of antibiotics is coming to a close. In just a couple of generations, what once appeared to be miracle medicines have been beaten into ineffectiveness by the bacteria they were designed to knock out. Once, scientists hailed the end of infectious diseases. Now, the post-antibiotic apocalypse is within sight.

    Hyperbole? Unfortunately not. The highly serious journal Lancet Infectious Diseases yesterday posed the question itself over a paper revealing the rapid spread of multi-drug-resistant bacteria. “Is this the end of antibiotics?” it asked.

    Doctors and scientists have not been complacent, but the paper by Professor Tim Walsh and colleagues takes the anxiety to a new level. Last September, Walsh published details of a gene he had discovered, called NDM 1, which passes easily between types of bacteria called enterobacteriaceae such as E. coli and Klebsiella pneumoniae and makes them resistant to almost all of the powerful, last-line group of antibiotics called carbapenems. Yesterday’s paper revealed that NDM 1 is widespread in India and has arrived here as a result of global travel and medical tourism for, among other things, transplants, pregnancy care and cosmetic surgery.”

    One of the interesting statements in the article deals with the lack of research into new antibiotics. Since it is a war of attrition with bacteria developing resistance to antibiotic drugs one intuitively would conclude that research (while always a step behind) would have to be ongoing to meet evolutionary challenges and the cross national spread of ‘new’ bacteria but this isn’t what is happening:

    “Since the 1990s, when pharma found itself twisting and turning down blind alleys, it has not shown a great deal of enthusiasm for difficult antibiotic research. And besides, because, unlike with heart medicines, people take the drugs for a week rather than life, and because resistance means the drugs become useless after a while, there is just not much money in it.”

    I would be interested in knowing if the “pharma” referred to is specific to British companies, European companies, American companies or all of the above. It would seem that there is more than adequate reason for well funded, ongoing governmental research into this field of biology if pharma won’t step up. Having a conspiratorially attuned thought process though, I could argue that there are very good short term reasons for doing nothing on the part of pharma or government. It would sure make a dent in some of the increasingly undesirable demographic groups of citizens.


  5. Biatch….Then again she could join the Church of Scientology and redeem her sole or be a fund raiser for Benny Hinn…nah, there are some things he would not stoop too….or would he? Moneys involved….he could start a hot line….nah, he’d have to share some of the money….or he could take her on the road and show the pictures before and after and now she has no cancer….possibilities…..

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