A fraud has involved swindlers befriending individuals on an online dating site before getting them to part with their money, with one US woman already having been swindled out of £150,000.
Police in both Britain and the USA have been conducting investigations into such swindles and today took into custody a 25 year-old man from West London for defrauding.
The arrest today follows other arrests at the end of November of a 50-year-old male and a 40-year-old female. They have been granted bail and have to return to a Central London police station later in March after further investigations.
London Police and its special Operations unit have taken into custody almost 150 people who have been using online dating scams to do with the London Olympics.
The police said that in this specific situation, once the swindlers have made friends with people on the online dating site they say they have to pay certain costs of a contract they had been offered to provide coach transport for police for the coming Olympics. The police have claimed that pledges to pay back the cash later were normally made.
One woman aged 69, from the US, gave £150,000 under this fraud. Police believe that there have been other efforts to swindle victims, and are keen to ensure more individuals are not taken in.
A superintendent said that the swindlers have been using the name of the police to gain enhanced levels of faith in their victims. Prospective swindlers should be told that the police will conduct immediate investigations if they try to swindle ordinary people in this way.
The suggestion is, be suspicious if someone asks you for money that you do not know well or uses the name of a well respected organisation as a method to add credibility to their requests. In these cases they are unlikely to be genuine.
It should be remembered that just because they flash you an official looking paper, that does not necessarily mean they are really who they say they are.