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Rachel Elwell, from the West Midlands, said the man, who claimed he lived nearby, told her he had gone abroad for an engineering contract in Ukraine. He convinced her with documents and pictures he needed money for issues that had cropped up and stated he had been taken captive by loan sharks. Ms Elwell, 50, said there was no guarantee of any money coming back.
Asked why she had given money to a man she had never met, the export manager, of Brownhills, said: "When he said to me his life was in danger and I didn't hear from him, I thought he'd been murdered. Ms Elwell said after he had contacted her on 1 January claiming to live in Cannock, his "picture looked nice", he "seemed to like the same things as me" and "seemed quite an open and genuine Uk dating romance. The man told her Uk dating romance would have to wait weeks to meet as he would need to stay in Ukraine, but later phoned claiming laws in that country had changed due to Covid and he now had to pay tax before any of the engineering work began, Ms Elwell said.
Telling the story to BBC Radio WMMs Elwell said she had been told work had stopped on Uk dating romance and matters "appeared very legitimate", but later she had "reluctantly" sent him money. She stated at one point a supposed tax office had sent a letter to him, which she had a copy of, and added: "They said So he cashed his pension in, sold his car, borrowed money and I helped him. According to Action Fraudromance or dating fraud is where criminals dupe people into sending them money by gaining their trust and convincing them they are in a genuine relationship.
In order to stay safe from such scams, it advises people to:. Anyone who believes they have been a victim of romance fraud, it said, should report it to their bank immediately and to Action Fraud. Continuing the story, Ms Elwell said the man had claimed two "heavies" had turned up and he had been locked in a cellar. He sent her pictures purporting to show him there. She added he claimed to have been released after money had been sent, but he had told Uk dating romance he would not have his passport, which had been taken from him, until interest had been paid.
On the day the man told Ms Elwell he was due to fly back, 16 March, she went to Heathrow airport and got an from supposed airport officials saying he had been arrested.
She said she had then approached Border Force officials who said, "look, it's a scam". Ms Elwell said: "It was in that moment that I knew it was all a lie. A spokesperson for West Midlands Police said: "Rachel's case is a prime example of romance fraud, her case highlights how much these scammers affect people's lives. Send your story ideas to: newsonline.
Romance fraud on rise in coronavirus lockdown. Romance fraudsters 'preying on lonely' in lockdown. West Midlands Police. What is romance fraud? Be suspicious of any requests for money from someone they have never met in person, particularly if they have only recently met online Speak to family or friends to get advice Perform reverse image searches on profile pictures, as they may not be genuine.
A reverse image search can find photos that have been taken from somewhere else. Romance fraud on rise in coronavirus lockdown Romance fraudsters 'preying on lonely' in lockdown Latest West Midlands news.
Related Topics. Fraud Cannock Brownhills. More on this story. Published 10 February. Published 9 November Published 20 October Related Internet Links.Uk dating romance
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