A check or money order is only a promise to pay or provide funds.
When you deposit either in your account, in essence you are making a guarantee that the funds will be provided.
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The con-artists quickly move off the website to begin sending personal emails back and forth, developing the relationship and trust.
Once the rapport is built up, with personal information gathered from the woman, appeals for cash begin, with heartbreaking stories to convince her.
The daughter received a punishment of 15 years behind bars, plus an additional four years on an unrelated charge.
The mother was ordered to serve 12 years in prison, to run concurrent with a 10-year sentence for another scam in which at-risk adults were bilked into a phony loan scheme.
City detectives say they have had further reports of women claiming to have handed over vast sums in the belief the money is going to help their new ‘boyfriends’ who are serving in Afghanistan.
However, investigations go on to uncover a widespread scam by Nigerian fraudsters who have successfully targeted desperate UK women through legitimate internet dating sites.
The mom-and-daughter team worked their con with fraudsters in Nigeria, wiring most of the stolen money to them and keeping a cut for themselves, authorities said.
Over three years, the women defrauded more than 300 people around the world.
Det Sgt Rod Nicholls said he had recently dealt with three cases, one where a woman made three payments totalling a five-figure sum and another where around £7,500 was given away.
“These are tragic cases where vulnerable women who have gone looking for love on legitimate sites have been conned by people claiming to be lovesick American soldiers,” he said.
Or perhaps their old college email is no longer in use?