New Hampshire woman conned out of $25,000 by guy she met on Match.com
(New Hampshire)–She joined match.com in April and in less than a week was notified that someone who appeared to be a handsome man from Nashua had sent her a “wink.” His profile name was “honestman,” he e-mailed that “the key to a lasting relationship is complete trust,” and said he had a dog named Coco. In the month that followed, Leblanc said, she was romanced by “honestman,” who “said everything a woman wants to hear,” while he conned her out of $25,000. She said all of her savings is gone, her credit cards are maxed, and she’s behind on her bills by a couple of months. “I feel ashamed,” said Leblanc, who is telling her story “for my own healing,” as well as to warn others to heed warning signs while looking for love online. Leblanc said her sister and brother had success with online dating so she decided to follow suit after surviving cancer. She was smitten by honestman’s profile, which showed a clean-cut, 56-year-old man named Bennett Lawson, who had salt-and-pepper hair and a lucrative overseas construction business. He “seemed nice and wealthy,” Leblanc would later type into a federal Internet crime complaint form. “I’m a first-time user of online dating,” she also reported. “All seemed well.” The alleged eligible bachelor told Leblanc he was working one last job building roads in Egypt, then planned to retire. They e-mailed, they instant-messaged each other, and they spoke on the telephone. It was during one of those conversations in May when Lawson said he was in Italy signing a contract for the Egyptian construction work, had hired a lot of people and needed an iPhone 4 and an iPad, Leblanc said. While “sweet talking” her, he asked Leblanc if she’d be willing to ship the electronics to an agent in Africa, who would get them to him in Egypt, she said. Leblanc bought the devices and shipped them to Africa, as requested. Why? “Because he kept sweet-talking me,” she said. “He said he’d give me $50,000 when he got home.” Later, Lawson asked for $6,000 for a camera lens he said he needed and he e-mailed a link showing the exact lens he’d buy. When he got back to New Hampshire, the bachelor promised, he’d pay Leblanc double the amount of her loan, she said was the deal. So she wired the money and he was “very thankful,” Leblanc recalled. More romantic messages were exchanged, then came a request for $10,000 to buy dynamite for the Egyptian road work, said Leblanc, who agreed to wire $2,000. She later wired another $5,000, then $7,000 supposedly for laptops, and another $2,000 he said he needed to ship $5 million worth of gold he’d bought. All of the money, which eventually exceeded $25,000, was wired to Guyana, Leblanc said. After tapping her savings and credit, Leblanc borrowed from family. And when she told the online bachelor she didn’t have any more money to send, he replied that she must not want him to come home to her, she said.
First things first, I grew up in New Hampshire and this woman is as New Hampshire as it gets. Dude haircut, no make-up, no style, and gross. So having said all of that…she kind of deserved to get conned. She has to know that a sweet talking international businessman isn’t going to be interested in a 56 year-old librarian. I mean she basically fell for the Nigerian Prince email scam. “Hey baby, I am in Egypt…can you send me all of your money? I have a lucrative international construction business, but I left my wallet at home. If you send me $25k I’ll give you $50k the minute I come home to your pasty skin and Mike Piazza hair. What’s that? You’re out of money? I guess you don’t love me enough. We are through”. In this chick’s defense his profile seemed pretty legit. I mean who would have the profile name “honestman” if he was really a con-artist? It’s always the last person you expect. Million to one odds, million to one.
PS: Miami delenda est
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