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Dating scam ends in murder

They added that the scams are a grave misrepresentation of the U. Army and the tremendous amount of support programs and mechanisms that exist for Soldiers today, especially those serving overseas.

WHERE TO GO FOR HELP: — Report the theft to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) (FBI-NW3C Partnership).

“We cannot stress enough that people need to stop sending money to persons they meet on the Internet and claim to be in the U. military.” Along with the romance-type scams, CID has also received complaints from citizens worldwide that they have been the victims of other types of scams in which a cyber-crook impersonates a U. After sending bogus information regarding the vehicle, the seller requests the buyer do a wire transfer to a third party to complete the purchase.

The Soldier’s rank and other details are often included in an effort to lend credence to the scammer’s story.

The Army reports that several senior officers and enlisted Soldiers throughout the Army have also had their identities stolen and used in these scams.

“Another critical issue is we don’t want victims walking away and thinking that a U. Soldier has ripped them off when in fact that Soldier is honorably serving his or her country and often not even aware that his pictures or identity have been stolen,” Grey said. Be extremely suspicious if you are asked for money for transportation costs, communication fees or marriage processing and medical fees.

— If you do start an Internet-based relationship with someone, check them out, research what they are telling you with someone who would know, such as a current or former service member.

“The criminals, often from other countries, most notably from West African countries, are pretending to be U. Soldiers routinely serving in a combat zone or other overseas location.

According to Grey, perpetrators take on the online persona of a U. Soldier, marry the persona with photographs of a Soldier off the Internet, and then begin prowling the web for victims.

— Be very suspicious if you never get to actually speak with the person on the phone or are told you cannot write or receive letters in the mail.

Service members serving overseas will often have an APO or FPO mailing address.

Often times the company exists, but is not part of the scam.

— Be aware of common spelling, grammatical or language errors in the emails. has established numerous task force organizations to deal with this and other growing issues; unfortunately, the people committing these scams are using untraceable email addresses on Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc., routing accounts through numerous locations around the world, and using pay-per-hour Internet cyber cafes, which often times maintain no accountability of use.

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