About Us Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use DMCA Opt-out of personalized ads
© Copyright 2023 Market Realist. Market Realist is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.

'Romance' Scam Costs Woman $200,000; How To Be Safe

It's important to understand that scammers know how to take advantage of people's feelings and vulnerabilities. 
Cover Image Source: Romance scam | Pexels | By Asad Photo Maldives
Cover Image Source: Romance scam | Pexels | By Asad Photo Maldives

In a recent incident, a 28-year-old man was arrested for carrying out what the police termed as a romance scam. The modus operandi of the scammer was to assume a false identity as a foreign currency investor. The unsuspecting victim, drawn into what she believed was a genuine romantic connection, found herself becoming a victim of a well-planned scheme.

Image Source: Photo by Alejandro Avila |Pexels
Image Source: Photo by Alejandro Avila | Pexels

The accused, whose name hasn't been disclosed yet, conned a woman who ended up sending him around $200,000. Thinking of it as an investment in what she thought would be a long-term relationship, the victim did not think twice before agreeing to the scammer's request. The man, however, was arrested at the Toronto Pearson International Airport earlier this week, with the Canadian Border Services Agency lending a hand. The accused faces six charges in total, including money laundering, fraud over $5,000, and violating a release order.

It is a scheme that involves an individual fabricating a false identity, showing romantic interest, and manipulating the victim into sending money. After gaining trust, they extract funds on the pretext of emergency or other needs, utilizing methods such as wire transfers, cryptocurrency, gifts, or fake investments. By the time the victim discovers what has happened, the scammer disappears.

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission points out that romance scammers usually ask for money to cover travel expenses, medical bills, customs fees, gambling debts, or visas. In 2021, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre received 1,249 complaints about romance scams from 925 victims across Canada. The total losses exceeded $50 million. Surprisingly, romance scams ranked second in total losses, just behind investment scams. However, many victims don't report the crime because they feel embarrassed or in denial about what happened.

Cover Image Source: GettyImages | Chris Hondros  Staff
Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Chris Hondros Staff

The police offer valuable advice to safeguard against romance scams. First, conduct online searches to authenticate the person's identity. Always check for photo duplications from the internet. Exercise caution with individuals rushing into love and pushing the relationship forward quickly.

A major red flag is anyone requesting money—be vigilant. If you suspect a romance scam, stop talking to them, and contact the police and your bank to stop transactions. Moreover, reporting the incident to the authorities concerned will not only contribute to ongoing investigations but also protect others from falling victim to similar deceptive schemes.