I once bought a pair of Ray-Bans on eBay for $20. The seller had poor reviews but I ignored that and went ahead and sent a check, since they didn't accept PayPal. I never got my sunglasses -- I was scammed, and worst part was, I kinda saw it coming. An Illinois man can relate to my pain. He found himself in a similar situation, only on a grander scale. Like 10,000 times grander.
The poor guy gave $200,000 to his online girlfriend whom he'd never met nor spoken to. And when he called the police, it was to save her!
The 48-year-old man went to the Naperville, Illinois police to try and rescue the woman, who he believed had been kidnapped in London. It's then that the police realized he had been scammed, and that she'd provided a fake Florida driver's license as ID.
Apparently the man didn't see the red flags when she was requesting he wire money to accounts all across the U.S. and to countries like Malaysia and Nigeria. He was "in disbelief" when he learned she didn't exist.
Really, dude? Nigeria? If you ever see that word in an email, you can pretty much be assured you're about to get punked. Oh, it breaks my heart. I hope someone warns him soon that there aren't any Princes that need his cash.
It is a little surprising that a man naive enough to give away $200K is smart enough to have saved $200K, but I guess that just speaks to the power of love. I think Huey Lewis put it best when he said, "You don't need money, don't take fame/ Don't need no credit card to ride this train/ It's strong and it's sudden and it's cruel sometimes/ But it just might save your life/ That's the power of love."
If only the guy had listened to some mid-1980s rock. He would've known he don't need money! I wish I had some savings to send this guy to cheer him up, but alas all my money was scammed out of me during the bad Ray-Ban deal last spring. I feel ya, buddy.
Have you done anything crazy or stupid in the name of love?
Photo via paalia/Flickr