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Registered: 08-03-2005 Location: Santa Monica, CA.
posted on 09-19-2005 at 12:41
Another scam story about russian scams
I'm writing to tell you my recent encounter of being scammed by a Russian women, pretending to be in Love with over the internet.
She first contacted me, through the Filipino Friend Finder web site. She located my pictures and my profile on their site, and she contacted me. She wrote letters with broken English, or with Russian terms for our language. It was all innocent at first, then the letters began describing how she thought it should be destiny, for her to find me this way. And then when she wrote the first letter, she did not think she would get a reply, but behold she got the reply from me. After that each letter showed more enthusiasm and excitement, and talk of her feelings becoming feelings of love, for such a concerned kind man like me. She told me she only made enough money to maintain her own apartment, but could not afford telephone or home computer. She emailed me everyday from her place of work.
As the letters progressed for 3 months, she asked if there would ever be a chance for us to meet in person? Could I come there to meet her? Since I'm disabled and in a wheelchair, I could not take traveling 23 to 28 hours, changing planes two or three times to get there, plus I have no idea of their handicapped accessible hotels or motels there. I explained it all to her, and she told me she had a one month vacation coming up soon in September. She asked if it would be alright if she applied for a Tourist Visa, and if I would like her to come here to meet, if her Visa and passport were approved. I was excited and said Yes, right away. She claimed to leave her town of Cheboksary on a Friday evening and travel to Moscow. She told me she spoke with a travel agency, with who she must sign a contract and they would help her with the complete process, but all must be handled through them. She first asked for $675.00 dollars for Documents and processing fees.
After her interview at the embassy, Medical checkup, and criminal background check, all was approved. Then she needed to purchase plane ticket, so she asked for $1,575.00 for air fare. I told her I could buy it here on the internet cheaper and Federal Express the ticket to her, but she said it was a condition of the contract, that she purchase the ticket from the agency, or else a term of the contracted is violated, and they would report this violation to the Embassy, who then would not give her the Visa or Passport. I sent the money by Western Union. After she got the money, she claimed to go to the travel agency and buy the ticket. She then wrote to me to tell me the ticket they sold her was only for one way, to get here. They apologized for the mistake but now they would return that ticket and give her better price by selling her two one way tickets at the same time with open dates of travel. She needed an additional $520.00 sent so she could purchase both tickets. If she could not prove she had a return ticket to come home her Visa would not be issued. It all sounded skeptical to me at first, but I don't know there customs or laws there, so I chose to trust and believe her. After all she loved me, and could not wait to arrive here for our meeting.
When she took her tickets and luggage to the airport, to come here, she said the Customs Department asked her to show them proof of her solvency, that she could in fact afford to travel to the US and have money to spend as a tourist, or be able to afford a hotel if necessary. She said she did not know this was a requirement, and she tried to explain to them her reason for coming here, and that she would not need money like that since she would be staying here at my home. Since her Visa was good for 90 days she wanted to spend the whole time here, and took leave from work along with her vacation to stay the whole 90 days. But customs said she must prove she would not be arriving here like a vagabond, asking people for money, or becoming a prostitute to pay her way. They told her she must be able to prove to them that she has at least $1,000.00 US Dollars for that long of a trip. She asked me to send it and as soon as she would arrive at the airport, it would be returned to me unspent or untouched, since it was only for show to the customs. I sent it.
She was to then leave Moscow 5:00 PM Wednesday, go to Great Britain (LHR) Airport, from there to New York (JfK), from there to Pittsburgh (PIT), arriving at 7:43 AM Thursday. Total flight time 22 hours 43 minutes. She gave me the flight numbers and times. She did her home work good. I checked the internet flight schedules, there was a Flight 873 British Airways leaving Moscow at 5:00 PM on that date, and arriving at Pittsburgh at 7:43 AM the next morning.
Then there was the last email I received Wednesday evening, long after her departure time, saying she was detained at customs, because she set of the metal detector, because of a ring she bought for me, her future husband. So they kept her there for interrogation about smuggling jewelry. If she paid a fine of $890.00 it would take care of everything, and she would be allowed to go. I wrote back saying I would NOT SEND ANYMORE MONEY. NONE.
That was it, I never got a reply, no more emails, no phone calls. She had called me at least 4 times before. But not since. I know I must sound like a real jerk, and stupid person to anyone reading this, but believe me, if you read the right words in letters, listen to her voice on the phone, she was so very convincing. I think I will never trust another foreign woman, unless she is already here in the US. Just in case anyone out there doubts it can happen to them, just look at the attached photos, and do yourself a favor, do not answer any letters from a woman calling herself
Good Luck to All,
Sounds like you got hit pretty bad. Sorry you had such a bad experience. Like you I am also looking for a special lady from Russia. Like you I was scammed. Fortunately I read this forum before hand and I knew to be suspicious about money requests. My girl's alias was "yana" and she gave me almost the same spiel that you just related, almost word for word. That the travel agency could arange a visa but only if she got the ticket through them, blah, blah, blah, I love you, could you send me the money. Unlike you however, I was forewarned and forearmed. I reported the scam to Epersonals.com where I found her add. You can see her pictures for yourself at epersonal under "yanasingle". She, or whoever is using her photos anyway, also operates out of Cheboksary. She even gave me an address.
P.S. You asked my address: 428003, Russia, Cheboksary, Sovetskaya str,
26 build., 16 app. For Yana Otmahova
Also she used mail.ru. Her box was email@example.com. So watch out!
I would advise everyone to watch out for this one, and maybe be on your toes when dealing with Cheboksary in general.
I am looking to you guys to give some advice if possible. I have had much correspondence with this girl. she even asked me if I wanted to go visit her first but after reading what has been written I am almost convinced I am being scammed. My last letter is below.
Hello Chris, my LOVE!!! I am happy, I am happy, I am happy!!! I am happy that you are in my life!!!
I am happy that there is such a good, kind and wonderful man as you in my life. I am really
happy!!! I want to tell thank you very much for this! You have opened me a very beautiful
world... world of love... I couldn't suppose that my life would change so... Also I have been
changed myself... I like these changes very much... I began to believe in miracles, in
something light and good, I began to believe in love - it is the best thing! I feel like a
young girl!!! It is so wonderful. You have brought new sensations in my life...
The world around me has became other and I have been changed too. I began to feel in the
different way than earlier. People who know me very well tell me that I have been changed very
much. I smile a lot, there is the light in my eyes and the positive energy radiates from me. -
Only the person who is in love can look so!!! My desire to be with you is LARGE, HUGE!!! The
feelings overflow my heart... and I don't know how to live with this. How to live with the
feeling that probably I will never see the man, whom I love, I will never be with him, I will
never be happy... How I can live with such feelings in my heart?! I don't know how! I can't
live without you any more... I'd like to be with you very much, I'd like to be with you... I
think that our relations have been reached such level of the development that we must meet in
real life. One meeting can change everything... I could give everything for only one minute of
looking to you, talking with you, touching you... We must meet to understand, find out for
ourselves what are our relations, what are we mean for each other, will we be together or no.
We must understand do we suit to each other and only the real meet can give us such
possibility... I hope, you agree with me.
I can't do anything I only think of you... It mustn't go on in such way. I can't live so any
more! I have no any forces to live... without you... The world has discontinued existing for
me! I want only one thing - I want to be with you!!! I think that I am ready to spend all life
with you. Nobody else can't make me so happy - only you! Happiness doesn't knock twice and I
don't want to lose this chance to be happy. I don't want to lose you. You have become too dear
and important for me during this very short period of time! Please, give me such happiness! I
didn't think that man who lives so far from me, speaks another language, think in this
language and maybe feels very different than I, will have become so close for me, for my
heart! Oh, it is unbelievable, I think! But I want to believe and believe in this! There are
no borders for loving hearts and the language of love is clear and one for everybody! Please,
answer, my dear Chris! I will wait... Please, make me happy and you will be happy too!!!
Dear I went to a travel company and all have learned about trip to you, and I want to inform you very bad news.
When I have learned it I was very strongly afflicted and very for a long time cried.
For trip to you I need to legalize some papers (the visa, the passport for travel abroad, the insurance,
tickets aboard the plane) All this will cost 1550 dollars, is very big money for me, to me my work there
is no place to take such money does not give me so much money. I can find 500 dollars to borrow from the friends,
but I do not know where to take the others of 1050 dollars, dear I can hope only for your help,
you can help me with money for trip to you???????? I think that we should help each other in our happiness.
Dear I believe in you and I trust you, I think that you can help me I believe in you.... I Wait for a fast reply.
Sorry guy but you are getting set up to be scammed for $1550.00USD. Also, for the life of me I do not understand, comprehend why you don't make the effort to go see her if there is so much "love" floating between you both. What's the deal on that? They cant come to the U.S. and most other western countries without a fiance visa, and that is NOT issued by any russian agency or govenment entity except the good ol USA consulate. It cant be bought or paid for in the underground or black market. Another troubling fact in her letter is the oodles of love she professes so quickly. That just doesnt happen from emails. Many of these girls know how to "play" us western guys. Scammers know other scammers there. One gal may brag about how she made $1500 off some dumb american guy, so the next girl tries it, etc etc etc. For many of these girls it is a business, and pays better then the $100-$150 a month they can make there doing a normal job.
Use LOGIC and RATIONALE and realize it takes as much or more time to build a valid relationship with thse women then it would with the gal next door.
Found this article - thought it might be helpful...
5 Rules To Avoid 99% Of All International Dating Scams
By Bud Patterson
A Foreign Affair
I tell guys all the time that getting scammed in the
foreign bride search is a personal choice and
completely avoidable. That's right, I believe the vast
majority of guys who get scammed do so willingly by
simply not listening to the wealth of good advice available
all over the internet. Men get scammed when trying to
meet women too young for them. They get scammed
when pursuing only the most perfect women whose
profiles resemble those of Victoria Secret models. They
get scammed when trying to do too much too soon for
women they barely know. And they get scammed by
trying to buy the love of a beautiful girl. In my 9 years of
work in the foreign bride search I've watched countless
men get run around in circles by girls and agencies trying
to do nothing but get inside their wallets. Some asked me
for advice along the way on whether or not I thought they
were taking part in something disingenuous and when I
told them I thought yes they were - I never heard from
them again. I'm sure that's because they chose not to
listen, got scammed and were too embarrassed to admit
so to me later on. One thing I can say in defense of every
guy who's had an emotional or financial ass-kicking from
the foreign bride search is simply that the scams are
getting scammier every year. Those less than sincere
bodies are getting better and better at fooling us.
Look, I promise you there are tens of thousands of
very lovely sincere ladies in the foreign bride search
who would love to meet you for all the right
reasons. And there are agencies that can reliably
introduce you to them. Every guy who leaves the foreign
bride search because of a scam is one less guy available to
meet any of the fine women who still wait to be discovered
and loved. So for those of you still earnestly trying to do
this the right way, I'm going to give you an iron-clad,
take-it-to-the-ATM set of rules to follow to avoid 99.9% of
the international dating scams. To find the shortest
possible path to HER - please read and heed - the
well-intended advice below. BTW, for the average guy in
the search - NONE of these will be easy to follow.
5 Best Practices To Help You Avoid International Dating Scams:
1. Keep It Real About Age Difference: If you do
nothing else I advise here, pay attention to this rule. While
the vast majority of guys seeking international love will
focus only on women under 25, there can be a whole host
of problems with this group of ladies. Now I'm not saying
that every girl under 25 is insincere. I am saying the vast
majority of agencies trying to scam you are going to do so
with profiles of ladies who are under 25. Why? Because
they know the thousands of men seeking a foreign bride
each year - most of whom are over 40 - are looking
exclusively at the under 25 crowd. Why try to scam you
with someone in her 30's? How boring!! A better
approach would be to stroke their ego with the ruse of a
beautiful, gullible, innocent model-wannabe falling madly in
love through correspondence. Guys - I've interviewed
hundreds of foreign women in the past 9 years and almost
all of them have said they want to meet men who may be
older but no more than 12 - 15 years. In other words,
foreign girls want men from their generation. If you're
older than her father, that's probably not a good sign.
Agencies know that men love fantasy and if they sell it to
you - you're buying. Big time. In the foreign bride search
you could easily meet a sincere girl in her late 20's or 30's
or 40's who is perfectly real and totally interested in you for
all the right reasons. Don't be sucked into "I Dream Of
Jeanne" meets "Fantasy Island." In the process of trying to
avoid scams - don't scam yourself!
2. Have a Realistic Filter: If her profile looks like it
belongs in a swimsuit or lingerie model's portfolio - well,
that's because it probably was. Many agencies based in
Russia or Ukraine will buy from modeling agencies profiles
of unsuspecting women who have no idea their portfolio's
are being sold to a marriage agency. That same agency will
then hire English speaking women to write endless letters
to guys impersonating those same "model wannabes."
Guys in their 40's and 50's pay through the nose to write
to fake profiles of scantily clad girls sitting spread-eagle on
the beach... "Yes, I'm absolutely gorgeous and only 21,
sitting hear on the beach in my thong yet I can't attract a
local man my age. I'm pretty enough to be the next Bond
girl but alas, I'm so lonely and cannot meet someone.
Please all men up to 90 write to me, I'm waiting for
you..." Guys who correspond to such profiles are making
some scammers awfully stinking rich. Yet, again, the
agencies that are trying to scam you are going to sell you
fantasy and they know what your fantasy looks like.
They're not likely to post real profiles of ladies who are fully
clothed and respectfully represented by their choice of
poses and profile data. How boring! The men I have
known who actually traveled to Russia or Ukraine to meet
such perfect, young models were run around until they
were broke and got nowhere. Again, keep it real, guys.
The many sincere ladies who want you the right way may
be older and fully clothed but they'll look just as fine in their
lingerie or bikini. TRUST ME! There are many men who
come to an agency like A Foreign Affair only to meet the
top 1% of all 40,000 profiles there. Be realistic and
sensible as you develop your filter for eligible ladies.
3. Talk With Her By Phone: If you choose to avoid the
above 2 rules and you do target the under 25 and/or
scantily clothed crowd, and if you're getting close to a
100% response to all your letters - I might suggest a
phone call or two. Translated phone calls can easily be
arranged with any of the girls you are writing to - if they
are real. If you're getting long, romantic and flirty letters
from girls who are ready to fall in love with you after just a
week or so and your whole correspondence experience
seems too good to be true - call up the girls and talk to
them. This is your reality check against the possible fake
profile where the interpreters are writing letters scam. If
the girls are real they'll remember everything you wrote
about. They'll be there at each call's scheduled time.
They'll sound every bit as enthusiastic on the phone as
they do in their letters. If on the other hand, they seem
disinterested, short-memoried and in a hurry to get off the
phone, that would totally contradict the letters you've been
getting, right? And why would there be such a contrast in
behaviors unless something is seriously amiss.
BUT: The above only applies to women you have developed
steady correspondence with. Girls are less likely to be
excited and talkative if you've only written one or two
letters. Why? Because the vast majority of men will write
one or two letters but never get on a plane and go meet
someone. Foreign girls know this. If you're talking after
having written a few letters you will probably be viewed as
being more serious in your intentions. That will help you
capture her interest.
4. Do NOT Send Money: to any girl you haven't
met, fallen in love with, become engaged to and are
not absolutely sure is in love with you. If all of the
above have occurred then at some point we men will
do what men in committed relationships do. There
are some aspects of the fiancée visa process, such
as translated documents and possible English
lessons for example, that we must pay for. I am by
no means saying be cheap during courtship, rather,
you should send flowers and gifts on any occasion
that requires it. But if the above criteria is not in
place, there's no good reason to send cash. I don't
care what the circumstances are - if she's asking for
money, check that request against the above criteria
and if there's one part unchecked - don't do it. That
means do not pay for internet services, do not pay
for medical services or English lessons or computers,
cell phones etc. Do not take her shopping for a
date. Do not send her money for traveling to
America - that is most assuredly a scam if you
haven't yet met. No foreign girl in her right mind
could or would travel across the world alone to meet
a total stranger.
So, when I say "Don't send money until in love,
engaged, etc., I mean - DON'T SEND MONEY UNTIL
ENGAGED, IN LOVE, ETC. Do not send it for a
lap-top, or for medical bills or rent...
This sounds like Dr. Seuss! Do not send it for a
phone, do not send for broken bones, or aching
heads, do not send it for a bed, you'll just be sorry
in the end. Don't send money, don't be
scammed! Do not be scammed, Sam I AM!"
Ok seriously, this is where so many guys get
themselves in trouble. Our brains are wired to leave
the cave, find and slay the noble stag, drag it back
up the slopes to the cheers of our waiting wife and
cave-kids. We want to provide, it's a very basic
instinct. We've also bought into the notion that
these are poor and desperate women and we can
buy their love and affection. We cannot. We
definitely can have love, but we can't buy it. So
don't try to! Provide support when the time
comes, but again, check such moves against the
above criteria and listen to Bud.
5. Your First Date Is a Cup Of Coffee: One of the
trickier scams in the modern foreign bride search involves
girls who bring their own "translator" when you go abroad
to meet them or try to go to an expensive restaurant for
that first date . Girls will cite comfort and familiarity with a
particular interpreter as their reason for the request. Some
will say that the agency responsible for introducing the two
of you will insist on their interpreter being used for your
meeting, versus one of your choosing. This is a common
form of scam where the translator will charge you excessive
for basic services (like sitting around your hotel room while
you unpack or for watching your TV with your girl when it's
raining outside) then split the fees later with your girl.
Many women would simply accept your interpreter and be
just fine. If she has a serious problem with your choice of
translator, be careful to discuss exactly why. Be very
tactful but insist that you use your interpreter at least half
the time and see how she reacts. Most sincere women
really wouldn't care.
The one possible exception to this rule would be if the girl
is traveling alone a long distance to meet you. Due to the
problems with human-trafficking in the FSU, some girls will
simply not travel unescorted in some way. This is
completely understandable, given the risks to them. In this
case - be sensitive but aware. And that first date - make it
a cup of coffee, or a glass of wine, or a walk around the
park - or at most a lite lunch at a café of your choice.
Cafés serve great food and ambiance without the 5 star
prices and decor. Any serious girl will have no problem with
one of these less expensive options for a first date. If you
choose one of these and come away feeling sure the girl is
sincere and well-intentioned, then a more extravagant
second or third date will be in order. Don't be cheap, for the love of God - but don't be a sucker either.
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