A Virginia woman has pleaded guilty in a U.S. court to faking her own kidnapping in Guatemala to extort money from her family in the United States.

U.S. prosecutors say 34-year-old Sheena Flores was living in Guatemala with a child last year when she told her family she had been abducted and would be killed if a ransom was not paid.

The family wired $3,000 before learning the kidnapping was a hoax.

Flores faces up to 20 years in prison when sentenced in October.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.