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Romance scammers are taking advantage of vulnerable women online to get money

Don’t give money to people you met online

DETROIT – Investigators have always thought online dating impostors were following a script, or a playbook, and now it appears in many cases that’s exactly what’s happening.

Many of these scammers will ask women how their weekend was, or how their week is going so far. These social media pickup lines were taken from a sort of romance playbook written half a world away.

Diane Standish said four months into talking with a man, he asked her to marry him. She never realized the man she loved was using the photo of an ambassador and a string of one-liners. She said it was never about love, it was all about her money. She lost $270,000.

David McClellan, CEO of Social Catfish, Inc., introduced Local 4 to one of those alleged Nigerian Romeos. His name is Ogbama Godfrey, a member of a team of 20-something men using hacked photos to get cash by lying to vulnerable women.

Social Catfish opened a line of communication with Godfrey, also known as Luke, to expose the scammers’ strategy. Godfrey said they are looking for women who are widows, divorced or depressed.

He said he was working the scam for four months and he had felt guilty. He admitted to taking thousands of dollars from women, according to McClellan.

The scammer said once you fall in love with them, the scammers will do whatever it takes to make the victim give them money, even if it means convincing the victim to take out bank loans or sell their car.

Watch the video above for the full report.


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