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Now they can get on the Internet and go across the world," Cook said.
"When you meet someone and you really want someone you just want to believe them." Her advice to daters is the same, online or off: "Enjoy the relationship, but keep your money to yourself," she said.
"A little gift of flowers or candy is a good aphrodisiac," said Miskell. I can't tell you the number of women who have fallen for this." Eventually, the con artists convince their soulmates to do them a big favor — help transfer funds out of the bank.
There have been so many victims that they are starting to find each other online.
As soon as he returned, he promised, he'd come visit Smalley in Ohio. The spirited e-mail romance hummed along for another two months before there was a problem. Even after the bank told her the money orders had been altered — they were purchased for , but then "washed" and doctored to read 0 — she still held out hope.
Richie said his boss paid him in postal money orders, and he was having trouble cashing them. Could she cash the money order for him, then wire the money to him in Nigeria? But a friend pointed her to an Internet site devoted to Nigerian scams, and suddenly, Smalley's world crashed down around her.
He spent four months gaining my trust and he did it." So-called Nigerian scams, where victims are ultimately tricked into sending money to the African country using some irreversible method like a wire transfer, are common. But the seductive flavor of this type of the scam — known to some as "sweetheart scams" — and the incredible patience shown by the scammer reveal just how far con artists will go to trick their marks. of Washington state, who asked that his last name be withheld, says he sent ,200 to a similarly seductive scammer. Ryan was approached while hanging out in a chat room devoted to Grateful Dead fans.
His seducer also claimed to be an American out of the country getting paid via money order, and also ultimately asked him to cash them. "The thing that duped me was the whole music issue.
The most practical way to meet others going through the same condition is to meet them on dating sites dedicated solely to such profiles, such as Positive Singles, HIV People Meet and so on."So much came back to me after all of this was done," she said. There's nothing new about charming men and women swindling would-be lovers, she said."When they invented the car, the con artist could drive to the next county.Five weeks later, when the bank came calling, all ,000 in Ryan's bank account — most of it from a student loan earmarked for next semester's tuition — was frozen by his bank. She seemed to be into the music I was into." Flowers bought with stolen credit cards Nigerian-based con artists seem to have seized on sweetheart scams of late, said Dale Miskell, supervisory special agent in charge of an FBI cybercrime squad in Birmingham, Ala.Scam artists post ads to online dating sites and lurk in chat rooms with names like "40 and single," or "Recently dumped." Often, they reach out to a lonely soul with flowers or candy, purchased with a stolen credit card.