Professional scammers don’t care about feelings and emotions of their victims. They are attracted by easy money, and they perfectly know how to mislead people to get their money. Sometimes such scammers gain millions of dollars. They attack users in different countries and on different continents. That is why it is very difficult to struggle with them by legal techniques.
Nigerian court sentenced a student to 19 years of imprisonment because this student had met a 56-years-old Australian woman in Internet and swindled out $47.000 from her. The student of a technical university met his future victim, who was looking for an eligible bachelor in Internet in 2007, and introduced himself as a 57-years-uld engineer from Great Britain.
This young man sent her a photo of a white man and told her a tragic story about a horrible road accident, which had taken lives of all his family. The Australian woman was complaining him that all men she had met before disappointed her. After a few weeks he called this woman, introduced himself as a doctor and said that her fiancé had had a car accident and needed expensive treatment. The Australian woman sent him the necessary sum of money.
Two weeks after this swindler again called the woman, but now he introduced himself as the elderly British “fiancé”. He thanked her for help and said that he’d like to come to her to Australia, but he needed a sum of money to do it. Under the court decision, in addition to imprisonment, this internet-swindler or scammer must give the luckless Australian back all money he received from her by false pretences.
Everything is clear in case of African scammers, who play on heartstrings of men and women living on other continents. But you can easily encounter a scammer even in trouble-free Europe of even USA. Here are several real stories.
A resident of Atlanta, 61-years-old Mitchell, the author of several detective stories and science fiction novels, was accused of swindling out 4.4 million dollars from two women by false pretences.
Lies, which led the writer to the prisoners' dock, can turn into 15 years of imprisonment.
According to the prosecution, Mitchell met a well-to-do woman on a Jewish dating site in 2006. The writer told the woman that that a well-known Hollywood producer was going to make a film basing on one of his books. Besides, writer told his new acquaintance about his company, investment in which was very profitable, and promised to introduce her to his broker. A woman called the broker, not knowing that she was speaking with Mitchell himself, who could change his voice very adroitly.
In order to consolidate the success, Mitchell made a declaration of love to this woman. The couple spent holiday together. But after she had “invested” about 3 million dollars in a Mitchell’s company, Mitchell’s desire to communicate with her rapidly began to decrease. According to materials of investigation, Mitchell used the money to make his ex-girlfriend come back to him. We should note that this Mitchell’s ex-girlfriend invested in his non-existent company a considerable sum of money, too: about 1.4 million dollars.
Having appeared before the Court, Mitchell pleaded not guilty in a strong voice. He said that all he had was about 2 thousand dollars in cash and he even couldn’t hire an advocate.
An appointed attorney refused to comment this case in any way. According to the prosecution, Mitchell used money, gained by false pretences, for buying luxurious cars, expensive paintings and a membership in a prestigious golf-club.
Here is another example. A homeless American man swindled out about 100.000 dollars from 13 women, having introduced himself as a millionaire. Paul appeared before the Court on charges of swindle and theft.
Paul found his future victims on dating sites. The homeless connected to Internet from his laptop. The scammer introduced himself as a media magnate, a Grammy laureate who needed money for launching his new project of CD and DVD production. In order to prove his honesty, Paul showed his future investors profit and loss statements of his non-existent business.
Deceived women sent the “media magnate” cheques at his ex-wife’s address. It is not known if she was an accomplice of the scammer.
When the police arrested Paul, he had 1 dollar and 28 cents in his pocket. All money was spent by the homeless on gambling.
But Norwegian policemen encountered the most unusual criminal. He is always within reach and always… in the process of crime! This being said, police haven’t been able to do anything about his crimes for 10 years already! Norwegian policemen celebrate this jubilee by not quite usual wishes to the “hero of the day”: “We wish him to become old at last!”
This “wonderful” scammer’s name is Charles. He is 34 years old. He is Englishman, but he has been “working” abroad for ten years already. As a rule, he prefers Scandinavia. He’s become a millionaire for this period of time and lacks for nothing, but he still discharges his “duties” for the love of the game… and women, of course, because they are his only source of income and inspiration.
Charles is a modern Casanova. He has hundreds of women in his “employment sheet”, who were charmed by him in a matter of minutes. The Norwegian police received 63 reports about his crimes. Women accused him of swindling out of all their money and valuables. According to the official information, he seduced 227 women, having received about 1.5 million Norwegian krones. Actually, there were at least three times as much charmed Norwegian women as the official information says, but they keep from giving evidence for a variety of reasons. As a rule, they feel ashamed.
The Englishman always promises to give all money back and “pay off a mortgage” on jewelry. And Norwegian laws do not forbid people to “borrow” anything, so there is no possibility to sue him.
Charles has a huge card index, where he keeps results of his “victories”, and a lot of business cards. His oldest victim is a 51-years-old hairdresser, and the youngest one is an 18-years-old student, who lent him her student loan.
Charles was never sentenced for all he’d done. The only thing the police was able to do was to deport this adventurer several times, but he came back right away.
“Once I was escorted to England by two Norwegian policemen, – Charles told to journalists. – But as soon as they said goodbye to me, I bought a round-trip ticket. I had been in Oslo even earlier than they arrived!”
He willingly explained, why he’d been “working with” Norwegian women. “They are silly, believe everything and are even grateful for vivid recollections, because they do not like their own men at all.”
As a rule, Charles meets women in restaurants and bars.
“I usually come in a bar, find a pretty woman and meet her eye. If everything happens in a hotel, I can spend money on drinks, but I will ask to send a bill at a room of a lady. I prefer elegantly dressed and slim blondes from 20 to 38 years old. They almost always fall for my winning phrase “hello, I’m not trying to pick you up, but simply want to sit and talk to you”.” As a rule, from here on, women don’t part with him till the morning. Now, at his 10th anniversary of “work” at Scandinavia, Charles “shares the experience” and considers multiple interview requests to be the recognition of his merits.
How to Secure Yourself
Don’t be afraid of real and virtual acquaintances, but if you make such acquaintances, you should observe several simple rules.
When communicating in Internet, a man should set real goals for himself: why and of whom he wants to
make the acquaintance. The best thing is to state it clearly and openly right when he’s making the acquaintance. A person should restrict his circle of contacts only by people who pursues the same goals. Study their profiles carefully. You should define your circle of contacts and only then visit one or another dating site.
When having a conversation with a potential friend, you should ask as much questions about your interlocutor’s life as possible, including personal questions, too.
Before planning a meeting, it is very important to make sure that you have no doubts about a person with whom you are going to meet.
When possible, you should try to get several photos of your supposed partner. Otherwise, you have no guarantees that he’s sent you his own photo.
You should plan the first meeting in such a way that it would occur in a public place. You should secure yourself and tell your relatives or friends about your meeting, place of meeting and supposed time of coming back home.
When meeting on neutral territory, you shouldn’t book a double room. You should always have a possibility to lock up in your own room, if something went wrong.
How to Recognize a Scammer – Several Practical Advices
How to Recognize a Scammer According to his Profile
1. Beautiful photos – 1-4 photos, age – from 35 to 50.
2. Age of a supposed partner is not stated in a profile, or age of a supposed partner is larger than age of a profile owner.
3. There is not much information about a profile owner or about a supposed partner.
4. Simple and widespread name and surname.
How to Recognize a Scammer According to Letters.
1. He gives you an e-mail address and asks to send letters there.
2. He uses samples of letters and just copies and pastes your name in the beginning of a letter.
3. He asks you to go to the chat at yahoo.com and communicate there right after your first reply.
4. He tells you some “fish story” in a letter: his wife died in a car accident, he is alone with a kid. Hereafter he doesn’t want to remember this “painful” story, because he tells different stories to different women.
5. When you ask him to send you more photos, he sends you only the same low-quality photos he has in his profile.
6. You receive the same photos at repeated request.
How to Recognize a Scammer According to Online Communication.
1. He can communicate with you online for hours even on the first day.
2. He asks you right away about place of residence, job and housing conditions.
3. On the second-third day he confesses his unearthly love to you.
4. If you do not react on these confessions, he starts suspecting you of unfaithfulness (as if you must be faithful to him!).
5. He tells you about a supposed business trip to Africa of Asia in the nearest future.
6. He asks you to tell him your phone number or gives you his own number to send him a SMS, when he’s already left to his “business trip”
How to Recognize a Scammer According to Behavior
1. He prefers to communicate without using a web-camera. You will never see his face.
2. He will tell only about his feelings very soon.
3. He is not interested in your live (kids, job, past, present). Everything will be connected with his feelings to you.
4. He promises to come to you, but forgets to ask where to come, how to obtain a visa, etc.
5. All you know you learned from his words. You won’t get any evidences.
6. Something terrible happens (military coup, fatal disease, etc), and only you can render financial assistance.
If you want to find more information about scammers, visit the following sites.
A confidence trick is an attempt to defraud a person or group by gaining their confidence - wikipedia.org
Antiscam guide about known scammers involved in dating fraud with Anti scam program - www.stop-scammers.com
Dedicated to fighting Nigerian and Russian romance scammers - www.romancescam.com
FTC online complaint form - www.ftc.gov
Internet Fraud Complaint Center - www.ic3.gov