A Lillooet woman was swindled out of $27,000 in a romance scam that started in South Africa. On April 7, a woman reported to Lillooet RCMP that she had been the victim of a romance scam.
The woman told police she had gone to South Africa in 2021 and met a man who appeared well off and well connected and she fell madly in love with him.
The woman returned to Canada, with plans to bring him to Canada in due time. Soon he started asking for money for plane tickets and diamonds he was supposedly buying. Over next three months, the Lillooet woman told police she sent the man over $23,000 dollars.
However, the man continued to delay his planned move to Canada, and gave different reasons for why he was changing his plans. She eventually refused to send him more money and the relationship was over.
Based on fraud reports to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, romance scams were responsible for the second highest amount of fraud-related dollar loss in 2021, the first being investment scams. The centre recommends that victim of a scam, fraud or cybercrime, should contact their local police station as soon as possible.