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Woman Swindled by Man She Met on Tinder for $200,000

Oh, the dangers of online dating do exist, and this is a horror story that made me shake my head at a very disbelieving pace.  On a story published on ABC News, a woman claims that a man she met on the popular dating and  hook up app, Tinder, swindled her out of $200,000!  Of course, the click bait sucked me in, and I was naturally curious as to someone could be so dumb, so blatantly catfished, to allow this to happen.  As I read the story, I couldn’t stop reading the gory details.  Today, I’ll share them with you with my usual no punches pulled commentary on the subject matter.

Norwegian Masters Student Scammed by Israeli Millionaire on Tinder?

Tinder Scam

Cecilie Fjellhoy felt that she had met a dude with a ton of cash on Tinder when she met Simon Leviev, who immediately swept her off her feet.  The man called himself “The Prince of Diamonds.”  (That would have been my first clue that the guy was a complete fraud.)

The story that started as a romance novel quickly unraveled into a living nightmare, according to Fjellhoy.  The relationship made her fear for her safety as well as go into significant debt from the online fling.

“I hate him, he’s so horrible,” she said. “I am just tired of crying about this you know? It’s just so painful. I just hate myself that I did this.”

The man’s real name at birth was reportedly Shimon Hyuat, who at age 28 has been a con man who already did three years in a Finnish prison for defrauding many women on his way to financing his lavish lifestyle which featured private jets, exotic cars, and other items he loved to show off, according to Fjellhoy.

When it was all said and done, Hyuat defrauded her out of over $200,000!  His charm, generosity with flowers, and a false sense of security had her admit she fell to “confidence fraud.”

I thought these types of scams only happened in Nigeria!

Internet-facilitated romance scams are the largest type of consumer fraud right now, according to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.  Literally, billions of dollars are being bilked from people across the globe in these types of schemes, according to the FBI.

Fjellhoy went on record saying her romantic encounter felt innocent.

“This was the first time where I felt like, ‘Oh my god I really like him. And it seems that he really likes me back as well,'” She said. “He’s texting and he’s calling and he seems to really want to get to know me, and I think I feel a bit for that.”

Hyuat went under the guise of a “diamond dealer,” and said that he worked for LLD Diamonds, which kept his travel schedule quite hectic.  The long-distance relationship meant that many love notes and messages were sent via text messages and voice recordings.

Usually, Hyuat would fly her to wherever he was, but sometimes he did come to London to visit her.  He always mentioned “danger” in his line of work that kept him on the move.  At one point, he even told her that he could not return to London due to “threats he was receiving.”  However, he was quick to get her ushered over to where he was residing.

He hyped up enemies in the diamond business like it was the 1990s war between the bloods and crips, which would have made me raise an eyebrow and question this man.  Sure, I’ve seen Blood Diamond, but we’re not talking about Africa here.  Am I the only one with a sense of common sense?  

He even went as far as posing with bodyguards in a hospital after he said he was “attacked.”

The big move by Hyuat was when he begged her for a line of credit so that he could buy plane tickets, accommodations, and dinner reservations under her name to avoid his “enemies” tracking him.  Again, common sense should have set in for someone who was a Master’s student, am I right?

As you can predict, the money he was supposed to pay her back simply wasn’t coming back to her.  Hyuat fired up the excuse machine like a bad sports gambler after a bad beat.

“My angel My love I just talked to the bank and they told me that the [transfer] of Amex will be there on Monday thousand percent,” read one text message Hyuat sent her.

She justified the cash advances by believing he was very wealthy and that it wasn’t a problem.  He also needed all this money since he had an “entire team” to book along with him.  Wearing flashy clothes and living like a celebrity, she never had a doubt she would be repaid.

“You didn’t even think that it was a problem when you were taking up the loans because you were so sure that this guy and the people that you had met was part of the LLD Diamonds and that the money existed,” she said. “When he said, ‘Everything’s going to be fine after this week,’ and then it didn’t. So just ‘one more week’ and then ‘one more week.’ So in the end you almost you didn’t even realize how much money you actually [owed].”

Of course, she told him that she loved him.  She fell for this man head over heels.  She was in “shock” when she finally realized that this was a living nightmare, and there was no way in hell she would be repaid any sum of money.
She also alleges that Hyuat had this same scheme running with other women.  She feels she wasn’t alone in the scam.

Eventually, she filed a report with Metro Police in London.  

Ironically, Hyuat was reached by Nightline, who told them he was in Panama.  Funny, I didn’t see him, and I was just there in spots he would be at, but then again, those spots have women of the night and not really women you will ever get money from.

He told Nightline a fairy tale via text message that reads like a psychopath:

There is nothing here just [a] loan between friends that went south… she agreed to loan me the money and then she disappeared… before we [were]able to pay back… they used me for my life they got expensive gifts and everything, In other words gold diggers, When I ask help they agreed to help and they know that I have some problems I didn’t run from no one it’s all fake news and lies.”

Meanwhile, Fjellhoy is in London and attempting to reboot.

I’ll close on this thought……I’ve used the Tinder app for many years now and have NEVER, EVER put myself in a harmful situation.  If something feels funny, I run.  While I feel very sorry for this woman and what she went through, she made the choice to give money to a man.  This happens daily, whether it’s in business, friendship, family, or other situations.  You have to think long and hard about your own financial situation before you give anyone a dime these days, because you never know what could happen.  To me, there are lines.  Everyone has a threshold.  Maybe you can part ways with $500, while someone else can part ways with $50,000 without batting an eye.  However, clearly this shook up this woman as it’s global news and giving Tinder (a great app) a bad name.

Be smart, be aware, and be safe.

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