Alert: Online Scammers Pretend To Be Soldiers Overseas

By: KKTV
By: KKTV

The Better Business Bureau is warning people to beware of fake soldiers on social and dating Web sites. Women are being tricked into sending money to "love interests."

The BBB says scammers are pretending to be members of the military and are wooing women on internet dating and social networking sites, but they aren’t looking for love --- they are looking for money.

"According to the U.S. Army Criminal Investigative Command, these scammers are using real military photos to create fake profiles and they have received hundreds of complaints in the last year about the scam. Some scammers have even used photos of military members that have passed away," says the BBB.

The Command reports that con artists build relationships with women and then start asking for money for things like internet use, phones, leave papers, money to enable them to come visit the victim, etc. Once the women send the money, they never hear from the scammer again.

“To play on someone’s emotions and respect for the military is extremely appalling,” said Carol Odell, CEO of the Southern Colorado BBB. “Online dating is popular. Scam artists know that. So, be cautious when using this service. Don’t be too trusting.”

Many of these e-mails have been traced back to foreign cyber-cafes in Africa, which makes it hard to track down the individuals operating these scams.

If you feel you may been a victim of such a scam, report it to the Internet Crime Complaint Center: ic3.gov / 1-800-251-3221 and the Federal Trade Commission: www.ftc.gov or 1-877-438-4338.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by PAM Location: MALTA on Mar 4, 2012 at 05:32 PM
    YES ITS STILL GOING ON - SAME MAILING ADDRESS TO SEND MONEY TO DAVID FEMI BUT TO BE SENT FOR SGT LEO SMITH TO BUY FOOD AS HES LOST HIS MEAL TICKET!!! NOW HE WANTS TO SEND ME A SPECIAL LEAVE FORM SO HE CAN GO HOME AND ITS GOING TO COS AROUND 1200$ HE CANT PAY HIMSELF AS HES BEEN IN KABUL 4 YEARS WITHOUT PAY AND NO LEAVE. YES HE LOST HIS WIFE 4 YEARS AGO IN A TRAFIC ACCIDENT HAS A SON OF 20AND SURPRISE SURPRISE HIS MOM JUST DIED IN JANUARY 2012. IVE HAD ALL THE SOB STORIES IM GOING TO ACCEPT NOW AND HAVE DELETED AND BLOCKED HIM ALSO THE PHOTOS OF HIM DONT MATCH ITS 2 DIFFEERENT PEOPLE OH YES AND WHERES HE FROM? SPRINGFEILD OHIO. TALK TO HIM FOR 5 MINUTES AND HES ASKING FOR MONEY. BEFORE CHRISTMAS HE WANTED 500 EUROS WIRING OVER SO THAT THIS DAVID FEMI COULD BUY HIM FOOD IN NIGERIA AND TAKE IT TO AFGHANISTAN SO HE WOULD HAVE A GOOD CHRISTMAS THEN DECIDES HE NEEDS A NEW LAPTOP COS HIS IS FAULTY AND HES BORROWING SOMEONE ELSES.THESE PEOPLE SHOULD BE STOPPED BUT HOW?
  • by Josephine Location: Mescalero, NM on Sep 13, 2011 at 08:33 PM
    A month ago,a person by the name of David Drey Smith contacted me on face book. He sent me a pleasant message, so thinking that it was ok. I accepted his friend request. He gave me this email address. sgt.davidsmith@ymail.com When, I viewed his profile, I imminently noticed that his photographs are of different men. He claims to be, a US Army Sergeant currently deployed to Kabul Afghanistan, and is from Ohio Springfield. After a few messages from this person, he started requesting that, I wire him money to this address: NAME : DAVID FEMI. ADDRESS :ARMY CANTONMENT CITY : IKEJA ZIP CODE: 23401 STATE : LAGOS COUNTRY : NIGERIA The address is not legit. I am not about to send some stranger my money. I believe this person, is stealing others identity by using their Military photographers.
  • by Justine Location: USA on Aug 23, 2011 at 12:40 PM
    Be aware of someone who calls himself Sgt.Olabode Collin. This person has been contact with a freind of mine and asking for money for leave from the army. He will call and get to know you. Start a relationship and then say he wants to take leave and ask you to complete a special leave form. This will need your personnal info and bank details. BEWARE!!
  • by Jan Location: Ohio on Jul 25, 2011 at 10:59 AM
    Yes, Jack Thornton (also goes as Jack Thorton)is a scammer. Other names connected with this scammer are Kelly Magillo, Sgt. Neilson, Falodun Seyi David (possibly his real name), and a new identity going by stevenjohn_general001@yahoo.com. As with all other posters, this guy is good. Do not fall victim to his scam. His story indicated that his daughter and sister had been killed and he had an ex-wife. So the story varies.
  • by katrin Location: london on May 30, 2011 at 03:55 PM
    hi ..im katrin from philippines but working here in london..i was just surprised that someone named sgt thornton jack invites me to be his friend in yahoo which i did accept..and like uve said he was telling same stories that his wife died in an accident ,he has a 10yr old daughter and he is in iraq as a peacekeeping force..then just i think 3days of chatting he wants me to send an email to Col.robert friedman requesting for a leave so he can come and see me..well i dont really believe it so i search the name of Col robert friedman and found out that hes deceased already..and i told him everything and he was upset so i just told him to back off and leave me alone..i even search the name of sgt thornton jack and now finally convince me that he is a scammer..he even sent me pic of him,wish i can post it here so i can warn the public..i just wonder why they have to do this,,i even told him tostop this and find a decent job..well i hope this will stop..
  • by Julie Location: England on Mar 17, 2011 at 01:40 PM
    Hi, Ladies please be aware - I had a Sgt Jack Thornton (Thorton) contact me - I suspected something as I found details for him that stated he was 30 from LA, 37 from Atlanta and 45 from Dallas. He is very good and told me his wife was killed in an accident etc - please don't fall for it. I am just about to tell him he's been found out.
  • by Suzette Evans-Johnson Location: tennessee on Feb 4, 2011 at 07:02 PM
    i too was aproched by a man going by the name of Sgt.Jack Matt Thornton from the Us army..but told me he was in Iraq...Also told me the same exact info that MAYA reported below..But I fell for it and wired 562 dollars for a phone unit...he then tried to get my bank info and also to wire more Money...as soon as i informed him i had no more money to send..he signed off line and i havent heard from him since He contacted me on face book ..inwhich i have reported him to face book and then he will ask you to yahoo message him.....Please ladies beware as i found several proiles on various dating sites etc...on the internet.... on this guy after the fact when i did a search on him...definitly a scam and he is very GOOD at it..Dont be a victim like me PLEASE
  • by Maya Location: Atlanta, Ga on Jan 22, 2011 at 10:08 PM
    There is a guy who pretends to be a Sgt Jack Thornton deployed in Afganistan, he asked me to set a phone account service so we could talk. He told me he was 37, was born in Atl, and he lived with his grandmother and sister, he also told me his parents were killed in the 9-11 crash. He has two pictures where he is wearing an Army Uniform with his last name on it "Thornton". Watch out for this guy ladies, he is a scammer.
  • by Dianne Location: Texas on Sep 19, 2010 at 11:42 AM
    Hello, I have been approached by a someone calling themselves Darren John Jones. He claims to be a SGT in the US Army stationed at Ramadi. He also claimed he was divorced with a son. He also claimed he was original from New York and currently lives in Austin, Texas. He also report he is an only child with both parents being deceased (John and Teresa Jones). He approached me via Myspace. He is a scammer, he tried to get me to help him with leave papers, after I told him the "Company was bolgus". He stated his commander would give him leave to come home, but he had to pay for the ticket. $1500 I refused. Be careful he had pictures of his self in uniform, but it was hard see his face, also he sent pictures of his self with his son around some tanks. He calims that the troops at Ramadi can not have web cams or phones. Just what out ladies he loves to send poetry. Thanks
  • by f Location: sw on Aug 19, 2010 at 03:03 PM
    They are also posting on Colorado Springs Craigslist selling non-existant cars. Be Carefull out there when you are told they are being deployed and "the car" is out of state" or send money 1st. If it seems to good to be true it is..
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