Editor’s Note: This story was submitted by a Hoax-Slayer reader as a warning to other Internet users. Names and other details have been changed to protect the privacy of the victim.
My story began in October last year. At this time, a man, who called himself Chris contacted me. He seemed very intelligent and claimed that he was a constructor from New Orleans, in the USA. He said that he was working in Accra, Ghana on a contract that would have a finish payment of $2 million USD.
We began to talk, and at first I didn’t believe his words about his “love” for me and so on. But talking with him was funny, and I began to trust him. I believed that he was genuine and not a scammer.
However, before the contract finished, he said that he was having money problems. He said that he needed money to buy the rest of the material for the project. So, I took out a loan of 3000 euro and sent it to him, so that that he could finish. After he finished the project, he claimed that he had been paid and then asked to send the funds to my account. I was suspicious and not sure if I should believe him or not believe him. However, he was a very good actor, and he persuaded me that he was serious and not a scammer.
So I gave him my bank account details. He then asked me to contact a lawyer – Barrister Daniel – who was to manage the transactions for me in Accra. Chris said that he had created a “zero account“ in my name at the United Bank of Africa (U.B.A) to allow the transfer of the money. I was also told to contact another man – Dr. William – who was supposed to be the manager of the bank. I talked to these men via mobile phone. Then they began asking for money. For the funds transfer, they said that I needed to pay at first 8500 euro, and then another 10850 euro, which I did.
Then Barrister Daniel sent me some certificates, but I was unable to confirm if they were OK or not.
Finally, my “big love“ Chris said that he had been robbed in the hotel where he lived. He said that they had stolen his computer so he was not able to stay in contact with me as before. But I had his mobile number and the mobile numbers of the barrister and bank manager. All these men talked with me as though I was really special. I tried to ask them various questions but they were very good at playing their parts.
After this fake robbery in the hotel, I confronted Chris and told him that I thought he was a scammer and that I didn’t believe him any more. But I still tried to stay in contact with him after this because I wanted to catch these thieves. They took all my money and brought me to a very bad financial position. They destroyed me.
Chris had sent several photos that he said were of himself. But later, when I checked the photos on the Internet, I discovered that they were actually of the British actor Ricky Gervais.
That is my story, and now I have only one wish – to find a good responsible police office who can catch them.
Importance NoticeAfter considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.
These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.
Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.
And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.
When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.
I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.
A Big Thank YouI would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.
I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.
Closing DateHoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.
Thank you, one and all!