An Ontario Woman Lost $80K In A Catfish Scam & The Reason Is So Heartbreaking

The scammer was pretending to be a European love interest.

Toronto Staff Writer
An Ontario Woman Lost $80K In A Catfish Scam & The Reason Is So Heartbreaking

Ontario police are warning residents about the danger of being catfished after a woman suffered a large financial loss while falling for a man she met online last year.

St. Thomas police reported that the victim, a woman in her 50s, was defrauded out of $80,0000 after being tricked into a romance scam.

The phony relationship allegedly began in the spring, when the woman accepted a friend request on Facebook from someone "posing to be a man living in Europe."

"The two began to message back and forth regularly eventually moving the communication over to WhatsApp," an excerpt from the report states.

"During the online relationship the woman was convinced the man was going to travel to Canada to live with her once he could find the money to cover his expenses," it adds.

The substantial amount of funds was sent over several months via wire transfer and Bitcoin, with the scammer coming up with new excuses each time to delay meeting in person and request more money.

Police advise residents who fear they are being scammed to visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre's website.

Thousands of unsuspecting Canadians became victims of fraud in January 2021, resulting in the loss of more than $10 million in total in that month alone.

The federal government revealed that other notable scams include criminals pretending to be from the Canadian Revenue Agency, Service Ontario, or Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

"Many scams and frauds attempt to imitate government services in order to gain access to your personal and financial information," the report read at the time.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

Patrick John Gilson
Toronto Staff Writer
Patrick John Gilson is a Staff Writer for Narcity Canada’s Ontario Desk focused on Ontario gas prices and is based in Toronto, Ontario.
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