Saturday, September 01, 2012
AUSTRALIAN MAN DUPED OUT OF $25,000. BY ROMANCE SCAMMER
by Stuart Cumming
(AUSTRALIA) Retiree Darrell McGovern has been left with a broken heart and swindled out of more $25,000 in less than two months.
The 64-year-old divorcee is urging Darling Downs residents not to send money to anyone who asks for it on the internet. His betrayal in an online romance scam began when he met someone claiming to be Ghanaian woman Rita Addison in an internet chat room in mid-April. Email addresses were exchanged and very soon the pleas for money started coming in.
“She told me her mother and father had passed away and she had been sent to live with her uncle,” Mr McGovern said. Lump sums and smaller amounts of money were sent as Mr McGovern's new friend made claim after claim, including needing money to come to live with him at his home on the outskirts of Oakey.
It was late last month when Mr McGovern asked an Australia Post Shop worker if he was correctly filling out a money transfer for $2000 that he was alerted to the scam. “The attendant said ‘I think this is a shoddy deal',” Mr McGovern said. “He took the letter in to his boss and came back out and told me to go to the Office of Fair Trading. They told me it definitely was a scam.”
Mr McGovern said he knew many people would probably say he got what he deserved, but hoped his story could prevent others from making the same mistake. “To tell you the truth, I really fell in love with that girl.”