Online romantic scams have been forcing many unsuspecting, kind-hearted people into bankruptcy. It is a real tragedy as these situations sweep across the nation in record numbers. Many of these people – frequently women and sometimes men approaching retirement age – are having their entire life savings cleaned out. When their life savings is stolen, they will many times dip even into credit accounts. The romantic scam forces them into bankruptcy.
How do these “romantic scam” predators seek out their prey? How do they build such a strong tie over the interent and the phone to get these unsuspecting, kind people to send their savings away overseas? The answers may surprise you.
Both women and men can fall prey for the emotional need for romance. Usually, however, the victims in these crimes are women. Women who have recently lost a husband or a romantic interest in their life – vulnerable people such as this are usually a prime candiate for the scam. Such people are usually well-off financially, having $200,000 or much more in assets in many cases. What these people lack is an emotional connection. They search on the internet until they find it.
The romatic scam that leads to bankruptcy starts off innocent enough. In fact, for the first 2-3 months or more, the scammer only builds the relationship. The romantic scammer will share all of his family and life details. The scammer will stay up late talking to the victim on the phone or through chat rooms. The two share the intimate details of their hearts. Sometimes they will exhange family pictures or even meet up on video chat. The two quickly become inseperable and deeply connected, at least from the viewpoint of the victim.
After 2-3 months or later, the tone of the relationship intensifies. The romantic scammer will propose meeting the other person. Hints of marriage or forming a new life together begin to color every word in their conversations. Soon the romantic scammer will soon strike. The scam will quickly lead the unsuspecting victim to bankruptcy. The “first strike” will happen very close to the supposed first meeting. The scammer will ask for money because they are caught up at the airport, customs, or have been sudddenly hit with family medical disaster. Somehow the victim will gladly send them the first payment which will range even in $10,000’s of dollars or more. It is no problem to the victim: this new friend has promised to repay the debt quickly back. It all descends from there. The victims will send $100,000 to the scammer. They will then quickly dip deep into all of their credit accounts, which causes them to be forced to file for bankruptcy.
Romantic scam victims are usually thoroughly convinced that their new “lover” is still loyal to them. Sometimes these scammers will trick elderly men or women with a diminshed capacity. When elderly people are simply tricked due to the weakness that came with their age, such a crime is repulsive and shocking.
What is more shocking, however, is that romantic scammers rarely actually trick somebody with clearly diminished capacity. This scam is completely different: it is a crime that virtually brainwashes the victim through emotional attachment. The victim usually still posseses a very strong will and mind. The scammer actually uses this strong mind to his advantage when he (or she) first asks for the money. The victim firmly responds with a large payment, unfortuntely knowing full well of the chance that they may end up losing the money.
This “brainwashing” is very powerful. Many vicitms still believe that their scammer will pull through for them even during their bankruptcy. The victim will have their entire family and friends confront them with the truth. The victim many times will still hold out. The vicitm is so brainwashed that they may still believe in their scammer even years after they have lost their life savings and filed their bankruptcy case.
If you have a loved one or friend who has a romantic online partner, share this information with them immediately. Have them read this article. Warn them before they send their first money tranfer.