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Edmonton Residents Alerted of Online Dating Fraud

Edmonton (Canada) police warned on February 17, 2009 that a new online dating scam had been circulating on the Internet.

In a statement, the Edmonton Police Service said that the scammers were posing as accomplished businessmen from the USA who had met unexpected trouble while touring the United Kingdom or Nigeria.

The Police state that compassionate and caring businessmen convince the innocent victims to help them by wiring money so that they could return to their country safely.

Falling into one such trap, an Edmonton woman said that when she was dating online in September 2008, she came to know a man for whom she developed an emotional feeling in just a couple of weeks. During the course of time, the man proposed her for marriage and they had come very close, as reported by CTV on February 17, 2009.

The man acting as the woman's boyfriend pretended to be a rich businessman from the USA. When some days had passed, he told her that he was in Nigeria where he ran into an unexpected trouble and so asked her to give him some money. At first, the woman refused, but he soon convinced her.

The woman narrated that she wired money a number of times for various reasons like travel, surgery, and other expenses. This way the fraudsters allegedly took a total $300,000 from the Edmonton woman.

The Police state that investigation into the incident is on, but proving the charges could be quite difficult. Also, according to them, the suspects are communicating through prominent online dating sites and are likely from Nigeria. Edmonton Police suggested anyone being asked for money in this manner should be extremely cautious, as it is clearly a scam.

Additionally, a survey by romance survey website Harlequin of 3,000 North American women and men showed that 30% of women and 39% of men had engaged in online dating to experience the delight of love. These figures therefore indicate that there is a high probability that people could get ensnared into scams pertaining to online dating, security experts commented.

» SPAMfighter News - 2/28/2009

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