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Three Nigerian scammers who befriended many of their victims on dating sites have been slammed huge prison sentences by a Mississippi court after making tens of millions of dollars from their schemes. Ayelotan and Raheem were also found guilty of conspiracies to commit bank fraud and money laundering. Dating back to at least , the scammers were involved in multiple internet fraud schemes, resulting in losses in the tens of millions, according to the Department of Justice. They were also apparently used to launder money via Western Union and MoneyGram, and re-package and re-ship goods obtained fraudulently. A whopping 21 defendants have already been charged in this ongoing case, 12 of whom have pleaded guilty to charges involving conspiracy and 11 of whom have been sentenced. The three Nigerians were among the six extradited from South Africa by US Department of Justice in to face charges of running a series of scams against gullible Americans over the past 16 years. Fourteen others resident in the US were also arrested to face trial in Gulfport, Mississippi on nine federal charges, including conspiracy to commit identity theft, wire fraud, bank fraud, theft of US government funds, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. The indictment states that since the accused, were part of a string of scams against Americans, facilitated by internet communications. These include the longstanding scheme, whereby a massive windfall is promised once a small number of payments have been provided, but the DoJ claims it went much further than that.

What I Learned Hanging Out With Nigerian Email Scammers

Times Staff Writer Oct 20, Nigerians use computers in an Internet cafe in Lagos. Most recipients hit delete, delete, delete, delete without ever opening the messages that urge them to claim the untold riches of a long-lost deceased second cousin, and the messages that offer millions of dollars to help smuggle loot stolen by a corrupt Nigerian official into a U. But the few who actually reply make this a tempting and lucrative business for the boys of Festac, a neighborhood of Lagos at the center of the cyber-scam universe.

The targets are called maghas — scammer slang from a Yoruba word meaning fool, and refers to gullible white people.

Google Trends shows that online dating is getting popular. As a result, the number of romance scams as well as victims are on the rise. From my first hand experience, majority of the dating scams are from West African countries – Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, etc.

Here’s how it happened. Before she knew it, her savings were gone. And the man of her dreams? He might not even exist. A short message sent on a Thursday evening in early December , under the subject line: Later, when she puzzled over their relationship, she’d remember this. She had contacted him, not the other way around. That had been a fateful move; it made everything easier for him.

But she didn’t know that yet. So much of this was new. It had been over two years since the death of her husband of 20 years; four, since she had lost her mother. Two sharp blows that had left her alone in her late 50s. His cancer took him swiftly, before she had time to process what was happening.

Romance Scams – A Huge Problem – My Story

I lucked out with an amazing fixer. As a newswire reporter focused on the terrorist group Boko Haram, he was able to provide crucial context for my story. Before that, he used to hang out with nomadic cow-herding kids, children who sell bottled water by the roadside, and budding scam artists. I told Michael I wanted to interview his scammer friends.

Relationship Top 5 free dating sites in Nigeria for single people. Friendite has the best design and layout of all the Nigerian dating sites, making the experience particularly user-friendly.

In a much more elaborate version of the crime, scammers participate in legitimate online auctions, finish with the high bid, and send along a check to pay for the winnings. The criminal sends more than the winning amount and asks for some to be wired back. When victims apparently successfully deposit the cashier’s check, they figure the buyer is legit, and wire the overage, often to a bank account in Nigeria.

Weeks later, the bank discovers the cashier’s check is bogus, and the depositor is responsible for the missing funds. Often, the victim is out both the merchandise and the money. In another variation, Nigerians offer to donate money to charities they find online; then, they follow the same tactic. A too-big check is sent and a partial refund requested.

Scammers target lonely hearts on dating sites

A young lady with her laptop Shutter stock news Not everybody fancies the idea of finding a partner on a dating site; nevertheless, there are some of us who do. A friend of mine once told me that looking for love online is like looking for money on a busy road. In as much as this friend of mine might be right to some extent, it still doesn’t alter the fact that impossibility is nothing.

Savvy Internet users are familiar with ubiquitous Nigerian e-mail scams. But the scammers are savvy themselves, and their plots are taking ingenious twists. Here’s how to recognize the scams and.

Bank-cally Thanks for ur help. Jokotola Gentlemen, you have done a wonderful job. This is highly laudable and am a huge beneficiary. I met a wonderful guy and jointly we are writing this appreciation memo. Coincidentally we joined in December He is laughing right beside me now.

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Woman shares her online dating scam story to warn others by John Matarese A woman shares her online dating scam story. If you’re single and looking for a partner, or recently divorced, an online dating site can be the answer to your prayers. But these cyber dating sites come with a risk.

Oct 20,  · The “gorgeous person in trouble” scam, in which scammers in chat rooms and on Christian dating sites pose as beautiful American or Nigerian women, luring lonely men into Internet .

But what does it mean when the face on the other end of the scam looks a bit more familiar? That man was me—sort of. Her broken English only served to heighten the sense of disconnect from reality as she explained the details of her affair: Naturally someone would use a photo of me in a situation like this, I thought. The role of the scammer in these ploys is to engender sympathy from the victim in order to convince them to send money.

But after going back and forth with the woman over Facebook, it occurred to me that maybe I was actually the mark of a meta-scam wherein the real scammer is falsely claiming to have been scammed by someone claiming to look like me in order to get the type of sympathy that these sorts of romance scams rely on. Although none of the internet security experts I asked had ever heard of that approach in particular, there was a perverted sort of logic to it.

What better way to inspire sympathy than through personal guilt? This poor, heartbroken woman had convinced herself she was in love with a man who looked exactly like me. Did that implicate me in her predicament? And those are just the 5, crimes that were reported. The ensuing shame that can result from realizing you were a victim of such a crime or the stubbornly romantic nature of the broken-hearted dupes, ensures that many more instances go unreported.

As the ICC explains , the nature of the scam preys on the loneliness of online singles, the majority of whom are over 40 and divorced or widowed, in order to lure them into a complicated scheme that begins with declarations of love but soon shifts to requests for money to overcome financial emergencies. Even the least internet savvy among us are wise to that unrealistic con by this point, but love — that greatest con of them all — seems to be too hard to resist.

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The Colorado Attorney General, John Suthers, said the two were part of a scam since that “lured unsuspecting women to internet dating sites by posing as members of the U. The Vasseurs’ victims over a three year period were based throughout the United States and from 40 other countries. The Vasseurs were indicted of 20 counts in violations of the Colorado Organized Crime Control Act, money laundering and theft in a page document filed by Suthers’ office.

Tracy Vasseur faces up to years in prison if convicted on all counts. Karen Vasseur faces up to years in prison. The mother-daughter duo worked with associates in Nigeria, wiring most of the stolen money to them and kept about a 10 percent cut “although they would often receive less,” the indictment stated.

10 Most Horrifying Real Online Dating Scams


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