‘Cast of characters’ allegedly used to torment victims in Home and Away catfish case

    A court has been informed that an alleged catfish employed a “cast of personalities,” including a Home And Away star, to hoodwink and stalk women.

    Lydia Abdelmalek testified and was cross-examined at her appeal hearing in the County Court of Victoria on Monday.

    In 2019, the 32-year-old was sentenced to two years and eight months in prison for six charges of stalking, but he challenged the verdict right away.

    She allegedly stalked and convinced women she was involved with the soap star using numerous online personas, including that of Home And Away actor Lincoln Lewis.

    Crown prosecutor Angela Moran grilled the Melbourne lady about the materials she handed her, which included tweets from her alleged victims to persons they thought were romantically involved with them.

    Ms Moran questioned, “What you’re doing is constructing a narrative to documents that are entirely innocent in an attempt to establish you didn’t do these crimes.”

    “That’s incorrect,” Ms Abdelmalek replied.

    Ms Moran outlined that a “cast of characters” was allegedly used to torment the victims after asking whether Ms Abdelmalek understood what the term “gaslight” meant.

    Ms Abdelmalek, a psychology student, testified that she had engaged with a fictitious Lincoln Lewis on Facebook as well.

    She told the court that she was seeking acting coaching from a Facebook account claiming to be Home And Away heartthrob Mr Lewis.

    She explained that in late 2013, after offering to pay the “actor” for his assistance, she sent $200 into one of her alleged victim’s bank accounts.

    “He offered me a bank account and said he didn’t want the money but that he knew a single mother who was struggling and that I should deposit the money in that account,” Ms Abdelmalek claimed.

    Ms Abdelmalek informed the court that she no longer had a record of the conversation because the financial details were passed on from that account.

    She allegedly sent $200 to her alleged victim’s account at a bank, but said she received the name from the teller and the details from a Facebook account she subsequently discovered was bogus.

    She told the court that when she realised she wasn’t talking to the Dancing With the Stars guy, she looked up the other woman’s name online and saved photographs of her.

    “When I realised the Lincoln Lewis I was speaking with was a fraud, I looked her up on Facebook, and those are the photographs on my iPad.” “I don’t disagree,” she stated.

    The alleged victim previously told the court that she was working with police to catch her stalker and asked the online persona she suspected to transfer her cash for a broken phone screen.

    Ms Abdelmalek denied on Monday that she had stalked her alleged victims.

    The appeal – which has run for more than 60 days – continues.

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