Stolen Image of Innocent Man Used by Nigerian Scammers
Stolen Image of an Innocent Man Used by Nigerian Scammers
You meet Collins Wright on Words With Friends and move to Hangouts. Whoever it is they're different as there are none of the usual Nigerian scripted questions. This lasts for months and at one point it seems who I am talking with changes. You get no details on their age, family history and even work.
To start he says he is an instrumentations engineer in Albany, Western Australia. He says he does small contracts. Another unusual point is that unlike a usual scam he goes offline for days. 3-4 and no activity, he also has no interest in exchanging pictures.
Soon I believe I am talking with a real man. He shows no interest in any relationship talk but after I push he does open up a little by asking you not to play with his heart. All this takes weeks. He then says he will be traveling but gives no destination. He has a 20 year old daughter, Sarah, who is sick and that causes him concerns. She lives in Jacksonville, Florida and attends university.
Slowly they open up. I send 2 pictures and receive none in return even though I ask. Then the first scripted questions arrive, favourite colour and do I own my own property. He says he has his own house and that he'd love for me to come and stay with him. He says he lost his wife but not how.
The talk continues on and off and we just start calling each other "honey" and "dear" even though there has been no talk of love. Then a week later he asks if you would like to remarry. He asks if you'll be there for him in his hardest times.
We continue and then he just says "I love you" so I ignore it.
Says he has been to Syria and almost been killed if not for God. He also has traveled to the USA frequently for contracts. What about his daughter? He was meant to travel but hasn't as he is still in Albany. I remind him and he just drops offline for several days.
Back they come and it is different. The scripted questions start being asked by them and I ask for pictures. They decline "due to my busy schedule" but the love starts to flow a lot stronger.
Then they just disappear for a week. I text a few times and they remain offline. They make brief contact citing COVID-19 for being offline. Interestingly they like to talk about US politics and are Democratic supporters. The pandemic is spoken of and he has cousin's infected. He turns to God for their salvation.
If it wasn't for the scripted questions I'd think I'm talking to a real man.
Suddenly I'm his Queen and he has quarantined. Where I do not know. I ask if he is at home and he says no, we had to self isolate and the company is paying. An employee is lost to the pandemic and he is becoming more negative. He remains sick now and in hospital but he can't name which one or where.
They go quiet again for days and he magically appears in "Massachusetts bay about 30 miles from shore" I ask what that means and he declines a response. Instead in come the YouTube love songs and the love is turned on. To my surprise he sent a photo, 2 months after we started talking. Thankfully it is downloaded from Instagram and the name is different.
Now he is on medication to explain his absence and he turns up the love talk to his queen. He hits me hard with YouTube songs. He speaks of another "fire accident" at work. Well I never heard about the first one! Again, they're offline a bit but the accident is spoken of with injuries and surgery required. To his credit the workers are covered by insurance.
No company is ever mentioned. No workplace is ever mentioned. His location is always vague
He wants more pictures so I oblige and get another in return. I only got the two and they're attached. It seems like they're two different men. The second is a body builder with a different name than the first. If you look as fit as he does I doubt you'd be as sick as who I am talking with claimed to be.
Then he moves on the scam. It is not what I expected. He has a 9 year old nephew who has fallen ill and needs surgery. I've learned those who are good at a scam work their victim on it over days or even weeks as is the case with this one.
Our discussion continues and from time to time there is mention of his nephew but it is not the main focus. He doesn't name the nephew, he can't name a doctor and most of all he can't name the hospital The love flows and slowly he makes a move for the money;
Him: My nephew health condition is putting a big bone inside my throat but I believe with God we will see this through. Raising cash is a serious problem we even applied for the go fund me but it's still not helping.
Me: Ooh I'm so worried about him. So young and all this. I pray he pulls through
Him: We need to make a deposit of half the hospital bill before they can proceed insurance is only paying %20 that leaves us with about $9500 I took a loan but it's still not enough cause of my mortgage the bank only gave me $2000
okay he never said he was rich he is saying I can't make ends meet with what I have.
Me: Ooh that is terrible
Him: Our last hope was on the go fund me but we have not even made a single dollar out of it I guess it's because of pandemic the world is healing already but on a low scale
Me: Well something has to be done for your nephew
Him: Will you be able to help me with some cash we are supposed to make deposit of the $9500 on Friday
Edit: Now the big giveaway as he asks for payment
Him: What means of payment do you use in sending money honey there are so many means over here. We have direct bank transfer money gram and so many others
Step one he wants a wire transfer. Never do that!
Him: There's Bitcoin also during this period of the pandemic lots of people world wide turned to it as a means of transfer too
Step two. A crypto currency? Come on you're just hiding as much as possible
Him: I will call the hospital in one hour time it will be dawn by then it's 4:54 am over there okay honey bank transfer is more better
Me: Okay babe. If you like let me know the hospital and I’ll send some flowers and balloons if you’d like
Me: Don’t forget I think some flowers and balloons would be nice too
Edit: It might just be me. But if you're in love with a dying 9 year old nephew in a sterile hospital room you'd at least consider saying that is a great idea here's the hospital's address. But he can't name the hospital He just goes quiet again!
Me: Hello babe is everything okay? I haven’t heard from you. Take care
Him: My phone was stolen yesterday I had to get another one
Him: Bank details
Bank: Bank of America Bank Address: 3139 S. Seneca St. Wichita, Kansas. Acct name:Sa**** R*** R** Acc no: 51800956**** Routing no: 10110**** House Address: **** East Roseberry St Wichita Kansas 67210
How do they get away with it? A run down uninhabited shack with an account name of someone who doesn't exist!