Aurora girl loses $250K to online dating scam; FBI shares warning flags. But it you’ve lost hundreds of thousands of dollars, just like Laura Bockus before you know

AURORA, Ill. (WLS) — An Aurora girl had been swept off her legs after which taken up to the cleansers, losing $250,000. She thought she had been dropping in love but rather, had been betrayed.

The FBI calls it the self- confidence scam or the relationship scam, and stated it regularly ranks into the top three schemes that are online preying on individuals who are trying to find companionship and love.

But it you’ve lost hundreds of thousands of dollars, just like Laura Bockus before you know.

” just exactly just How might you try this to somebody, i am talking about really how will you rest at doing this to someone,” she wondered night.

Bockus stated she was forced to place her Aurora house on the block.

“The annuity’s gone, my credits gone and I also need to offer the house,” Bockus stated.

Customer Investigator Jason Knowles has this I-Team takeaway in order to avoid a costly blunder on line.

Bockus ended up being tricked into delivering lots of cash re re re payments totaling $250,000 to someone who she thought could be someone for a lifetime.

“He would definitely move right right here, in this home after which we had been planning to purchase a home in Florida,” she explained.

She came across “Richard” on an on-line site that is dating. Briefly after she said they ditched the dating platform user interface and exchanged telephone numbers and electronic mail.

“Every time we see your image we fall in love yet again,” Richard published to Bockus. She’s got a dining table filled with intimate love letters. Another read, “If I had a flower each time we thought of you I would have an entire garden forever.”

It absolutely wasn’t well before demands for the money began.

“Six months’ worth of build-up to where we had been, I was thinking, really close as well as for him to ask for– started out lower amounts you realize like $2,000 or $3,000 after which the greatest one ended up being like $50,000,” Bockus stated.

Bockus stated those cable transfers eventually racked as much as $250,000. They certainly were all delivered from her different bank accounts, credit lines, even while present cards.

But Bockus stated the scammer’s tale had been persuading: What’s now considered to be a picture that is fake “Richard” keeping a search for $1.3 million, and a fake bank statement showing their account possessed a million bucks with it.

“He made me beneficiary for some account which he had,” said Bockus. She thought that “money” would soon all be theirs to generally share once Richard could easily get to your U.S. to gain access to the funds.

“They gain your confidence and begin with little to no things, small needs, only a little money right right right here, a benefit here, it you are so invested in this scam you are giving them more and more things,” said Siobhan Johnson, Special Agent and Public Affairs, FBI Chicago before you know.

The FBI Chicago Field Office stated many victims deliver at the least $100,000.

“a great deal of individuals think they cannot place the brake system on because then every one of the things they’ve done this far are for absolutely nothing,” Johnson explained.

The Federal Trade payment has rated Romance frauds as no. 1 when considering losses that are total. 21,000 reports from individuals claiming a total was lost by them of $143 million.

Despite the fact that most are offshore, The FBI claims it will often find scammers with assistance from its local computer forensics laboratory. Nevertheless, you must straight away report online crimes to

Therefore do victims for this scam do possess some hope?

“You never understand which situation will be the main one in which you have every one of the cash back,” stated Johnson.

ABC7 I-Team customer Reporter Jason Knowles called the device figures Bockus had for “Richard” but he didn’t solution.

“Oh it really is ruined my entire life, We have no retirement left,” says Bockus. She stated she reported the thief to authorities while the FBI, after she broke the life-changing news to her family members, who’ve been here on her behalf in this hard time.

Bockus recently sold her house. She is going to live at family members buddy’s condo in Florida for the present time.

Just what exactly would be the flags that are red? First take a look at images on online dating sites. You are able to run reverse image searches on these images to see in the event that exact same images are being used online. They should be willing to video chat or meet in a safe, public place if you feel a connection with someone online. When they ask for cash it is time to take off discussion.


FOR DESKTOP:Option one: Appropriate go through the image and opted “search Google for image”choice two: Research Bing pictures, click on the digital camera symbol after which either upload the image or paste the Address associated with the picture you are performing a reverse look for.

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