Information on romance scams and scammers.
#70656 by Viking Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:02 pm
This person is on Cupid.com under these two names. I got in contact with faith and we have been chatting for almost 2 months. On the website she says to be living in Berlin, Germany, but she lives in Ghana, Africa. She is a beautifull young woman (30 years) and she really know how to make you feel sorry for her. She has "fallen in love" with me and I have paid for a flight from Ghana to UK via South Africa. She has asked for money for food, for credit for her phone, for a laptop, money for medicine etc.....

She comes up with stories about her late father giving her a lot of gold, and the latest story is that her father left her a bank account with 2,3 million US dollars. But she has not got the money to pay the lawyer to deal with this matter.

She is a former model named Josie Ann Miller.

I warn everybody to stay away from her. I have paid her almost 2000 UK pound. Money lost !

Stay away from her. Do not fall for her beauty.
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#70671 by Bubbles Thu Oct 13, 2011 11:31 pm
Welcome to ScamWarners Viking. I am sorry you got scammed out of so much money.

Thank you for posting this warning to others. Yes, scammers are skilled at sounding like they really need your help. Sadly they are usually working on more than one victim at a time. Your post will help others who look to see if they are dealing with a scammer.

Bubbles, former Scamwarners moderator.

Rest in Peace 24 June 2015.

Gone, but never forgotten.
#144758 by Been Scammed2 Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:41 am
Hi well your story sounds just exactly like mine!I didn't get the plane ticket tho,I didn't have the money.I did get time on her phone.$300.She said she was living in Ghana,Africa with her mum.That's how she said mom.Her dad was American,mum is African.He was a missionary in Africa when he met her mum.(ok don't feel comfortable saying mum anymore lol)She moved to Florida,been living with him until March.She caught him cheating and she left,went back to Ghana.Now she said that she doesn't like it there.She talked about how much she loved me.She wanted to be with me.She said she needed to put credit on her mom's phone.She wanted me to get her a iphone too.She said that she'd buy it there.She also wanted a laptop so that we could video chat,and feel closer together.She went by Anna Robert by the way.This person uses different names.It must be the same person because they have the same story.But I know that there are many other scammers using Josie Ann Miller's pics too.But this person has alot of profiles themselves.Yeah and they had came up with a story about the gold.It was passed down to her mom.She gave it to her,and she wanted me to sell it here in the U.S,cause it wasn't worth nothing there.She said we could afford to build a home.She needed me to pay the lawyer first.Enough about her,it was interesting that you had a simular story.
#144795 by Dotti Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:45 am
Beenscammed:

I noticed that you have been choosing various threads, and linking the scammers behind them.

This person uses different names.It must be the same person because they have the same story.


There are THOUSANDS of scammers out there using the same storyline and very similar English. They are NOT all the same scammer. Some may be part of the same gang, but many are not. If you were to go through this entire forum, you would find hundreds more that are virtually identical.

The simple fact is, scammers have found a formula that works, and they tend to stick to it. It has been passed from person to person, sometimes freely, sometimes for money, sometimes just stolen, as scammers will not hesitate to copy or steal each other's scripts. Scammers use photos of the same models because they quickly learn which ones have a very large collection of available photos--and scammers also sell scam tools (which can include photo sets as well as the software to fake webcame, among other things) to each other.

These features exist in 90% or more of scams involving female characters used by thousands of different scammers:
-Scammer uses young, attractive female photos (often a porn model with video so they can fake webcam)
-character will be in mid twenties to mid thirties (even though half the time they are using photos of a younger woman)
-Scammer character is very innocent and naive, appealing to a sense of chivalry as well as sex
-Scammer targets men who are significantly older than their character
-Character rarely has children
-Character is all alone in the world, except for one friend or family member (who is often in poor health.)
-character has money, often gold, but it may be a bank account, that she can't access herself for some reason, but if you invest the money to bring her to you, her money will be there for the two of you as well.
-character typically is not highly educated (unless she is a nurse, or the occasional military "doctor") or exceptionally intelligent. She is typically going to be in a "feminine" job--nursing, hairdressing, modeling, possibly trading jewelry or antiques--if she is employed at all.

In fact, this format is so standard and so widespread in Ghana that the US Embassy in Ghana has a warning about it--even mentioning the gold or gems: http://ghana.usembassy.gov/romance_scam.html

The same is true of scammers playing males, though the normal characteristics are different (male characters will be over 40, educated (most often engineer, architect, or businessman,) romantic but not naive, most often has one child, photos may be more "average." Again, it's just a formula that has been found to work.

As far as the language goes, the similarities are nothing more than a result of being in the same educational system. They learn English in the same system, and they make the same mistakes. It's like a dialect. I can almost always tell you from the English if the author is from Western Africa, because of the specific mistakes and/or peculiarities, but I won't try to narrow it down further myself. Someone who has specifically made a study of the subject might.

I do understand your frustration - wanting to find some way to catch the person who scammed you. We also wish these were the same person, as our chances of getting action taken would be much greater. But scamming is an industry in Ghana and Nigeria. There is not one, or two, or even a few dozen people behind these scams. There are thousands, using the same formula, the same techniques.

On occasion we are able to link characters--but that is usually through IP's (which are of limited value but at times help) or when the scammer himself does something stupid, like when switches email addresses in mid-stream,copies one of his other accounts, or my personal favorite--he signs up here to argue against a post about him, and he uses one of his other scamming addresses to create the account (this just happened yesterday--a scammer signed up to protest a post about one of his 419 scams, and he used an entirely different email address that he had used for loan scams!)

As to WU information leading to the scammer, more often than not, that information is fake too. ID is not required if the receiver has the right information, and even if it is, many scammers have fake ID or a contact within WU (e.g. a local agent) who is corrupt, and will let them pick up the transfer in exchange for a cut of the profits.

Need to post photos? http://scamwarners.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=3219
Are you a victim of a romance scam? Read here for advice and FAQ's.
#144876 by Been Scammed2 Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:31 pm
Thanks Dotti,
I appreciate all your help. It just blows my mind on this whole matter. I really thought it was a real person,and didn't know that it was someone else pretending to be the person in the picture. There was another one too that got me. I just found out how to reverse pics on google,and found out that Christiana Winsllet is actually a pic of Kari Sweets. I didn't talk to her long, when I suspitioned that she was lieing. She wanted money to pay for her motel for the night. She was in Nigeria going to school for nursing. She was getting degree in a few weeks. She would come to see me then. But I had been talking to Anna Robert,and suspitioned that it was a scam. I stopped talking to Anna also. Well Christiana got really mad when I said, I can't send money. She said, "I will curse you for the rest of your life!" I am christian, and I said, "I am protected by the shield of God, and your curse has no power over me!" I was upset, and dropped my phone, which the screen cracked, so I didn't see the last few texts. Anyways Dotti, thanks for all your help, this site is much help! I know alot more about scams now, and will not let it happen again. One more thing, do you guys seek justice for these people? Can I give you info,and will that help? If you don't investigate these situations, who does? Thanks again.
#144901 by Dotti Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:21 am
Honestly, I wish I could say that we can get justice. The truth is, in most cases we can't.

On a few occasions, for one reason or another, we have been been able to provide information to the authorities that helped lead to an arrest. Usually, though, those arrests will be of the accomplices that are in UK or US. The sad reality is that the cost of investigation and extradition far exceeds the losses in most cases, and governments choose not to pursue cases based on the numbers.

Right now, the best thing you can do is post details. Post names, email addresses, phone numbers, and scripts. The more information you have posted, the more likely the next victim will find out before he loses money--and not only does it save another potential victim money, it keeps it out of the scammer's pocket. We also advise that you never tell a scammer he is posted, and never point out his mistakes--we don't want to teach scammers how to scam better.

Because justice is so difficult to achieve, many of us here are also scambaiters. Scambaiters pretend to be victims when they are not. The scammers are led to waste a tremendous amount of time trying to scam someone they think is a real victim, jumping through (sometimes ridiculous) hoops and chasing payments that will never come. When possible, baiters deliberately teach scammers misinformation that might alert a real victim to a problem, get their banks accounts closed for fraud, and their websites killed. (Note that we do not try to get their email addresses killed, because email address is the most likely thing a future target will search, and we want them to find that that they are dealing with a scammer. If we close an email address, the scammer will open a new one in just a couple of minutes, and search results will nolonger lead to the scam report.) In some cases, baiters have managed to make some scammers' lives downright miserable, while in others, they have just used up time that would otherwise have been spent on real victims. The other side effect of baiting is that it teaches us a lot about how scammers work. We don't get into baiting here at scamwarners. Our sister site, 419eater.com, is dedicated to scambaiting, and we have lots of information about baiting, including many published baits.

Need to post photos? http://scamwarners.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=3219
Are you a victim of a romance scam? Read here for advice and FAQ's.
#145378 by Grunt Thu Jan 17, 2013 3:54 pm
cupid.com/review/profile/1154942482.html

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