A Nottingham mother sent £10,000 to a Nigerian man she had never met before – and even contemplated leaving her husband and children to start a new life with him in the United States.
But the man who was posing as an oil rig engineer never existed – and nor did he live in the United States or have any inclination to start a new life with her.
In fact, he was using her vulnerability to fleece money from her bank, to a point where the 62-year-old had no other option but to take out loans in order to help him.
Her devastated daughter, 41, who has asked for her identity to remain anonymous, wants to tell her story so that other Nottingham people do not fall victim to this ruthless and manipulative con.The incident is still fresh for Jane, which is not her real name, after she received a heart breaking call from her father a month ago.
According to the Nottingham Post,he has uncovered money transactions to Nigeria totalling £10,000 and suspected his wife of having an affair.
The mother was confronted and it became apparent she had fallen for a make-believe man called ‘David’, in his 50s, with two children, aged nine and 11, who had contacted her over Facebook.
She fell for his sob story – that there had been an explosion on the oil rig and he could not afford the medical bills. He had two children who were cared for by a nanny after the mother tragically died during childbirth.
He messaged the mother through Facebook, which later turned into email exchanges, where Jane says even the made-up children were contacting her.
Jane said he promised her mother a new life in America – a move she was willing to make.
She told the Post:
“He was calling my mum ‘wife’ and he was going to take her to New York, even the children were emailing her. I think her and my dad had drifted apart.
“My dad works nights and rather than talking about their problems it escalated, and she felt lonely.”
Jane says fraudsters attempt to segregate the victim from the family unit in order to prise more money from them.
“The thought that someone has tried to take my mum away and that she was so brain washed. She was going to book a flight to Tenerife to meet this guy, which is not my mum at all. She would not normally do that.”
At first, Jane’s mum would not believe that this man was false despite her depositing money into a Nigerian account and the man claiming to be American.
But with the help of Nottinghamshire Police, she is coming to terms with what she has done and her husband and children are sticking by her.
“It is difficult to trust my mum again – the effect that it has had on mum and dad who have been together for 40 years. It was always a relationship I looked up to. I also can’t believe they did this to my mum. She is a very kind and caring person and would give her last penny to help someone.”