• Francesca Amato is a key player in a group of scam artists that target parents with active Child Protective Services cases
  • For years Amato has claimed she is a bestseller for her 2018 book, a claim she uses to gain the trust of desperate parents
  • There is no evidence that Amato has ever been celebrated as a best selling author by any notable company

One of the longest-running claims from known scam artist Francesca Amato is that she is the author of a bestseller that not even Barnes & Noble can keep on shelves. Amato often uses this claim to gain the trust of parents involved in Child Protective Services cases to push sovereign legal practices in exchange for financial gain.

Amato is connected to a group of scam artists believed to be under investigation by multiple agencies for harvesting victims from CPS groups on social media under the pretense of being able to bring their children home. While the majority of those involved with the scam operates purely on donations, Amato charges a $50 consultation fee for her services. Amato is not licensed to give legal advice and often turns to failed sovereign legal beliefs she regurgitates from other online sovereign groups.

Punished 4 Protecting

Amato published “Punished 4 Protecting: The Injustice System of Family Court” through Babypie Publishing, a publishing company not even accredited by the Better Business Bureau. According to Amazon, the book was released on February 5, 2018. Google lists the book’s release as January 5, 2018. Since its release, Amato has repeatedly made a vague claim that her book is a bestseller without going into detail on what established company gave this award. After looking into the claim, it appears to be completely fabricated.

There is no evidence what-so-ever Amato’s book was ever recognized by the New York Times as a New York Times Bestseller. The only published material suggesting a connection is an article on Medium by author “Emido Alprance B.” The article is titled, “a&b book Punished 4 Protecting: The Injustice System of Family Court By Francesca Amato-Banfield Free pdf s ebooks download edition.” The article includes links to download the book for free but does not include any evidence the book was ever noticed by the New York Times.

A search of USA TODAY’s best selling authors shows no results for Amato. At the time of publishing, Amato went under the name of “Francesca Amato-Banfield.” The only book that shows under a search for Amato’s name is a book titled “Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls” written by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo.

According to Barnes & Noble—the store Amato claims cannot keep her book on the shelves—Amato’s book has a sales ranking of 750,347, hardly the ranking of a bestseller book. The book has a total of only six reviews, an unreasonably low number for a book that is allegedly flying off the shelves. According to the site, there are currently four new and used copies starting at $12.10.

On Amazon, Amato’s “Amazon Best Sellers Rank” sits at 260,482. While her book is 16th in Divorce & Separation Family Law, 30th in Parental & Juvenile Family Law, and 10th in Children and Family Law, that still does not mean her book is the bestseller she claims it to be. For example, the number one bestseller in Children & Family Law is “Treachery: Thirty-One Strange Days With Casey Anthony.” The book’s Amazon Best Seller Rank sits at 85,555 and holds seven reviews. In other words, Amato’s higher ranking in these smaller categories is simply due to a lack of competition and interest.

According to Google Books, Amato’s book has one star and has only received an embarrassing total of three reviews. Again, a rather unexplainably low number for a book Amato is a best seller.


The only place that appears to recognize Amato as a bestseller is the website “Bestselling Authors International News.” The site is said to be run by “Bestselling Authors International Organization” which is founded by Viki Winterton. The site claims to have “taken over 1,200 authors to Bestseller!”

Much like Amato’s claim, there does not seem to be any evidence of Winterton having the ability to take authors to bestseller status. On YouTube, Winterton has only 57 subscribers with her most popular video sitting at an unremarkable 364 views after being uploaded four years ago. On Facebook, Winterton holds 7,223 likes with little interaction on her page.

Winterton is also the founder of “Expert Insights Publishing” and the magazine “PUBLISHED!” which featured Amato. According to Google Books, Winterton holds no reviews.

Fact Check Francesca Amato

The claim of being a bestseller is just one of many of the fabricated claims Amato makes while searching for victims on social media. Amato has gone as far as to claim she can get children home from state care with a simple phone call. She has pushed for family court judges to be arrested and claimed to have shut down family courts, a claim that is obviously also false.


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