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[UPDATE] The “Face” of Military Dating Scams – The Wall of Shame
UPDATE: This Ain’t Hell writes about who you can contact if you believe you have been scammed and the person is posing as a US military member.
UPDATE (29 Jul 2010): Hooboy! That CNN piece has brought in a LOT of information. It did exactly what I think Emily, Abbie and I wanted to do which was bring attention to this. So, I’ve got a LOT of new photos and names and I ask you to be patient as I find time to upload all these images.
This is going to be the most updated version of my exposure of these Nigerian scams that target military personnel on dating sites. If you have a photo that is being used to scam women by using photos of military personnel, send to cj[at]soldiersperspective[dot]us and I will update this post. Eventually, women will be able to come here and SEE that the photos are being used on multiple women. It may also tip off people to who the REAL Soldiers are so they can understand that their names and/or images are being used illegally. If you are a Soldier in one of these photos, please contact me from your military email address so I know you’re legit.
Let’s get started…This post will be updated as photos are submitted to me. If you are being scammed by someone using these photos, please put your stories in the comments section. And keep in mind that the people in these photos are not the problem. They are victims just as much as those that they scam.
Claims to be Perry Terry Knox. Tells the standard retirement story, with a 11 year old son. Said he was a Sargeant. Asked for an iPhone, but when told it was too expensive asked his victim for a Blackberry. Uses the Datehoodup.com website.
These are supposedly of someone going by the name Tom Curtis. He uses the email firstname.lastname@example.org. Because of the size of each photo, they were obviously taken from either a MySpace or Facebook page. I’ve seen that last photo used in other scams as well.
Here’s the storyline on this guy, who uses the name Robert Bill Haggard.
My name is Robert Haggard.I was born on the 2nd of August, 1961 at Baptist Hospital of California. I started A & A Children Academy at 6 and later on continued from Calvary Baptist Church Schools. I was very playful at school and it affected my academic works. I joined the Military academy at the age of 16. I was in the boarding school so my parents visit me once in a while. I didn’t spend much time at home. My mom was a head teacher and dad was in the medical field.
I fought in the Gulf war in 1990 to 1991. The gulf war was fought to liberate Kuwait from autocratic rule of the late Saddam. I had a pretty bad experience.
I am an E-6 Staff Sergeant (SSG). I also act as a platoon sergeant in the absence of the Sergeant First Class. I am the leader of my squad. I am a non commission officer and I work in the junior management of the military.
As you already know, I am currently stationed in Baghdad , the capital of Iraq.I have to let you know that I am on my second mission to Iraq and I have already spent 10 months here in Iraq. My first mission to Iraq was in 2003. My mission ended in 2005. When back to the States, I found out that my ex betrayed my love by going in for another man. She cost me a lost. She misused my properties so I paid her off. I was in love with her with all my heart but she let me down. I was with her for 14 years.
My son lives with a friend in Miami. I have full custody of him. I do not want to pay my ex any amount of money again.I will be getting him to stay with me when i come home soon. I was married only once. I am now looking for another woman to involve myself with. I will be home in 3 months. Actually, we are not allowed to communicate with outsiders because of security reasons but I need a woman for myself. A woman that will be there for me and I will be there for her too. I will not be able to call you because we are not allowed to communicate with outsiders on phone. Everything is monitored.
My relationship with my ex was like this. I loved her with all my heart. In fact it is true. I wasn’t thinking she can do such a thing. I helped her in her work, support her family, spending much time with her as much as I could. Going with her to the beaches, the movies and a lot of interesting places just trying to make her the happiest woman in life. I know she is regretting it by now. Her parents once called me and were apologizing for her but I already made my mind. I don’t know why she drew away from me. Maybe, she can’t control her sexual desire. I do not get angry. It happens once in a while but I know how to control myself. In the army, if you can’t control your anger, you gonna end up fighting all the time. Will like you to also send me some pictures of you too.Take care.
I am concluding this letter here but remember this am serious about my words
Have a good day.
I highlighted the glaring holes in this guys story, especially the rank. As I’ve said before, Soldiers ARE able to call back home and have contact with “outsiders”. What a weird term they use. Again, judging by the size of each of these photos, they were most likely snagged from a MySpace or Facebook page. Anyway, on to the next.
Meet “Captain James Miniard of the US army”. What a promotion for this guy, huh? I highly encourage you ladies being scammed by these guys to actually do a Google search on military ranks. You’ll knock out 90% of your problems right there.
The first one goes by the name MikeJones@Yahoo.com. The other 3 are supposedly the same person and goes by the name SGT.Oliver@yahoo.com ( full name Oliver Adamson). I’ve heard this name both ways. Both of these men were on HOT or NOT.
These are supposedly of a” Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin Lanois” from Cleveland North Carolina…and is presently stationed in Afghanistan in a “very dangerous are” in Kabul and that he is with the Second Falcon Bridge Combat Team 82 SF Base. Again, notice the rank of this LTC!! What a coincidence! I’m in the First Blue Falcan Blog Brigade!
Here is a pic of “MAJ Joseph Morris” aka email@example.com. No explanation about why the name and email address are different. Probably tired of creating new Yahoo accounts and keeping up with them. Same story wants ts2 money and transit money. Says he was in 24 years, wants to retire and marry his victims and has money aplenty. Again, if someone says they need you to pay for communications, it’s a scam. Soldiers can pay for it themselves. It can also be taken out of their paychecks automatically if they “don’t have cash on them”.
Here is “John Palmas”. He said he was from CA studied at West Point, been in the Army for 15 years. Now in Afghanistan and will come back in 11 June. They always say they’re coming home soon so that when something goes terribly awry, they can bilk you for sympathy money for hospital clearances and all that crap. The interesting thing about these photos is that the scammer actually took the time to remove the name tags from the photo. Could be anyone here!
The first 4 photos are of a young James Ruddock and his family. He says he is from New York and a widower with 2 daughters and that he also had a house in England that he was going to retire to ‘any day now’. He targets women in the UK mostly, it seems and proposes marriage, using his dead wife and two kids as emotional bait.
He also says to some women that he was supposed to be in Afganistan with a house also in the UK that he was going to retire to a different location. He sends out emails from “a diplomat” whose English and grammer are very poor but his emails requesting money for a package to be delivered to the UK. He also uses the name of Steve Ruddock and Mark Ruddock as well.
This one is funny, but the person using the above photos claims to be a Captain Brown Mark (Mark Brown?). The moron can’t even use photos of people with the right name in his scams!! He uses the email address firstname.lastname@example.org. This guy is such a tool, he tries to use General Odierno in his scam. He sent one of my readers he was trying to scam the following email explaining that “CPT Brown Mark” had been wounded and she needs to send him money to leave:
This is to inform you that that tallibiance man as attack the solider mans that they realse for the leave and will are very sorry to let you know that the travel will be in this week………And will are by let you know that you can still make the payment for your solider man capt Brown Mark in two day
GENERAL RAYMOND T. ODIERNO
Multi-National Corps – Iraq
Public Affairs Office, Camp taji
APO AE 09342
Now, I don’t know if ya’ll have ever had a chance to listen to General Odierno speak, but he sounds NOTHING like that letter. See for yourself:
This is supposedly Lt. Christopher M Morris with Military Number (USArmy/MlL 456378) based with the 32nd Infantry Division camp phoenix kabul in Afghanistan. There is no such person in the Army as Lt. Christopher Morris and we sure as heck don’t have “military numbers”. Oh, did I mention that the Army doesn’t have a 32nd Infantry Division?
Here are the pics that the scammers used on another reader using the name Sgt Patrick Mcdonald. This moron also sent pics using using the name Gen. David Petraeus. Ha! EVERYONE knows who General Petraeus is, but these guys aren’t smart enough to realize that.
The next scammer uses the name Capt. Harry Swain of the US Army, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, MOS 11B Infantry and these photos. When anyone asks him questions, he is vague on the answers – probably because he doesn’t know anything! He only communicates through yahoo and of course is retiring in June. This is so that he can set up the classic Nigerian Retirement pass payments, as if a Soldier needs to pay to retire from the Army! I tried looking into this one, but there are so many Swains in the Army, but none of them with a first name Harry.
The guy using these photos seems to have hit the motherload of images. He calls himself Arena Adams. He even has pictures of his “kids”. It’s beyond twisted when they start to use servicemembers’ kids. The have all come out of Saudi Arabia, but could easily be routed through there from Nigeria and other African nations.. He has a “diploma” (diplomat) contact the victims, Mr. Randolf was his name, and uses the phone number 233543756622. He also had the story that he wanted to open a jewelery store when he got “home” and was going to send a package containing all his worth, $950,000 in gold and $600,000 in money, to hold till he got here. I wonder how much shipping would cost on nearly $1 million in gold? It conveniently gets stuck in customs and after spending $11,000 for the weighing fee (oh, that’s how much it costs!), he still needed another 5,500. Said his birthday was April 30, 1969, and he sponsors children in Iraq, that he has 15 children that he set up a foundation for and provides for them.
Interestingly, the reader who sent this to me said, “When I told him I wanted to send him something for his birthday, he gave me the address 60 mango tree blvd, Accra Ghana, with the name Alexander Ofori Hammond as the person who will be receiving it.” I’m surprised since usually they just claim they can’t receive packages due to “security”.
I’m not even going to create some witty banter for the guy using these photos. I’m just going to copy and paste his intro email. It’s too funny to miss, especially that he calls himself “Mac Donald” as if it’s two names:
I have decide to take my time to write out this message to you and I will expect same back from you.hmm i lived in U.S right at this moment,in the beautiful city of Farmington Hills, Michigan where i had been for so long since the divorced between my Mother and my Daddy. Really before my Dad passed away, we were living peacefully together, but on a official peace keeping mission in Dafur War Region, let me quickly phrase out this that my Dad and my mother are American. My father was from the Marine Military,My mother is a teacher.They both met on a trip down to Paris, they met each other and were friends till they were finally able to find true love which had led them together to have given birth to me. hmm they both were Christians, just like my Mother would say to me, that if my Daddy wasn’t a Christian, she wouldn’t have agree to marry him when he proposed to her. We all were living peaceful before my Daddy had to divorce my Mom due to some sort of things i don’t know if i should tell you here because i don’t know you yet, so please don’t worry about it, i am only trying to be cautious of who i am dealing with, maybe when i know you enough alright? anyway to make it short, my Daddy and i lived alone in Farmington Hills, Michigan after the divorced between him and my Mother. So Mom couldn’t stand it living in the city anymore, she packed her stuffs and then went back to United kingdom to live on her life right there.unfortunately,I lost my father on the line of duty, he was on the sea as a marine Major when he fell to the bullet of Jamaican Militant.His death made me to join U.S Army because he was given a state of heart burial and all his benefits was converted to me as a beneficiary, which will make me to get more benefits after I retire from my present job. It was so painful to recall this memory at last i had no other choice than to go live with my Mother in Scotland United Kingdom as i felt needed someone around to help me through life difficulties before i can carry on myself you know what i mean. My Mom and i live together in an apartment here before i travel down to US when i got deployment to Sudan Dafur war region for peace keeping in the country. I am the second child of my parents because we are two in number of our parent. Honestly she is very nice, kind, caring and loving Mother anyone would pray to have. She treats me sister like every good Mother would treat their beloved children.
I have spent 19 good years in the Military,got rapid promotion due to my dedication to my work. I have been to some countries, mostly to lead the troop on peace keeping mission and aid relief mission. I am planing ahead for my future as I am looking forward to meet through right woman, so I can make my final decision to tender my resignation letter, in order to enjoy my new relationship and build a strong family.Now i must tell you i am looking for in a soul mate, someone i could call my own, a woman in whom i could invest my time, good deeds, seriousness. I know out there lies someone who has the nature of God inside of her, someone who would be ready to give 100% of herself. Of course i am not getting any younger as my age increases by year.I am 6’1 in height .. I do not smoke but drink socially. just looking for the rightful one now.Also this is the quality i seek in a woman,one who will be dedicated to being my wife, loyal, faithful and honest. One who knows what it means to being in love, one who is very affectionate, simple, easy going, fun to be with, caring, very sincere, very romantic, giving nature, tolerant home loving, hard working, reliable, sensual, with a sense of humor. One who will be a good Wife and who can take care of me and my one kids!
I am tired, need some rest. I led the early morning parade for the troop in my Base.
Have a great day and waiting for your message.
Sergeant Mac Donald
These photos look familiar. The individual has already appeared on this list, but now under a different name:
Notice how the scammer has removed the name from the uniform? That enables him to use any name he wants while sending out the same photos to other women. Here’s his story (with yet ANOTHER) rank faux paux:
Hello how are you going today ? well thanks a lot for your replyed …
well i have been devorced for 4 years now ..i have been in iraq 2 years 4 month now ..I;m in iraq baghdad now …i have been in the army 21 years …I’m army side …I am an E-7 Staff Sergeant (SSG) and now working with the un. I also act as a platoon sergeant in the absence of the Sergeant First Class. I am the leader of my squad. I am a noncommission officer and I work in the junior management of the military…well i have only one sister living in germany .. i have no kids …My mom was a head teacher and dad was in the medical field of the army and later worked with the .Gold mining company in ghana but as i m talking to you now i lost both of them..i will get back 25th june for retirement , that why i m serious here looking for woman who is can be with me for the rest my life …,I’m pride of myself in being honest and most trustworthy, I seek that in a mate, someone who is compassionate yet understanding who has a calm behaviour and a great personality…I b’lieve there is no ideal relationships, Be honest a relationship is hard work and compromise, It is as good as you make it, What makes a relationship ideal to someone is how much time and effort one puts into it and how committed two people are to it..
I love the grammar from this “senior NCO”. It’s also interesting that a SFC is in a “squad leader” position. BWHAAHAH!
The scammer posing as “SGT David Monfils” is one of the earliest names used for these scams. I hadn’t seen the name in a LONG time, but now it’s cropping up with photos. It used to be part of those “I have a million dollars buried in Iraq and I need your help getting it back” scams. Now, “Monfils” is trolling internet dating sites.
Now, this guy cracks me up. He even sent his victim a “scan” of his “passport”, an obviously photoshopped monstrosity of an attempt. I love the lines through the face. This is supposedly SGT Steven McCabe, but after searching for the person in the passport in the Army database, I came up empty!
These photos are of “Sergeant Heicken Kenneth” of the “US ARMY on mission to Iraq.” However, I’m trying to figure out who in the Army wears German uniforms and drives around in a vehicle with the German flag on it. The scammer using these photos lifted them from a Reuters photographer because he didn’t even remove the embedded code describing the photos. Since they are pretty cool pics of our German brothers in arms, you at least deserve what they are:
Top Picture: German Bundeswehr army soldiers with the 3rd company of the Quick Reaction Force (QRF) patrol during a mission in Chahar Dara district in the outskirts of Kunduz, northern Afghanistan, May 11, 2010. It’s actually a Reuters photo by Fabrizio Bensch.
Bottom Picture: German Bundeswehr army soldiers with the 3rd company of the Quick Reaction Force (QRF) take cover after detecting a suspicious site during their search for improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Chahar Dara district on the outskirts of Kunduz, northern Afghanistan, May 12, 2010. Also from REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch
He uses the email address email@example.com.
I’ll just let the dufus (Andrew Sanchez) using these photos tell you about himself, since I can’t seem to make any more fun of him than he makes for himself without realizing it.
I am presently in Afghanistan at the moment and would be back by next month, I have been serving for 11months here now and would be done by next month. I work in the Military and I am a Lieutenant, My work schedule is like a 24hour thing I dont have any schedule as we work round the clock here trying to keep peace here, I just have little time for myself here so you need to see how glad and excited to know that I would be back home next month.
between the 6months I would be off work. I have only lived in Lawrenceville GA and I have really enjoyed my stay here and would always love to stay here. That was where I was given an apartment and I could decline the offer as I also do like my apartment. I am not at all bothered about the distance. Andrew
I keep forgetting when he says he’ll be home!
By the way, a lot of scammers are starting to ask for things like iPods, undershirts, digital cameras, and other items. They are asking people to FEDEX the items to this address:
Tel.Num.00233205622258 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 00233205622258 end_of_the_skype_highlighting
Again, a moron who can’t read English using the photos of someone with a completely different name on his uniform. Meet “Joe Harold”. He says he is in Iraq on his third tour of duty. He is retiring in July 2010 and is looking for a life partner. He says he is is from Bedford, TX and also owns a home there. How dare he claim to be a Texan!! He, like almost ALL of these scammers, uses Yahoo: firstname.lastname@example.org. He is a smooth talker. He claims his mother was a head teacher and died. His father worked in Gold business in Ghana and also also died. He tells women his birthday has recently passed and how he would like to receive a gift. The posting text of Arena Adams is so similar and also includes similar text from Sargent MacDonald. Probably joe harold is also Sargent MacDonald. He asked to send an iPhone, digital camera, 5 packs of Calvin Klein white, round necked tshirts for him and his troops, chocolate, toffees and cologne. He also uses the Ghana shipping address.
I am Ivan Nobile and am with the US Army as an Intelligence Officer (MST SGT)currently serving in Iraq-Baghdad(Camp Taji),although I just got back from Afghan a week ago.I have no kids,I am widowed,lost my wife and parents in an accident 5yrs back.
My late parents were originally from Russia,and since their families never agreed for them to marry they moved to Virginia(USA) to start a new living as no family member back home in Russia knew their whereabouts.I have never been to Russia before and never met any family member of mine as my parents never allowed me,But for sure,I will visit them this year as my dad gave me all info about them before he departed.So I was born and raised in Virginia and I was educated in Arizona(AZ).
I attended my High School Education in Pittsburgh (Oliver High School) and furthered on to Central Texas College in Texas to major in Criminal Justice(Associate Degree) and then to the Cochise College in Arizona(AZ) to major in Intelligence Operations(Associate’s Degree).
I am seeking a woman that I can leave my life and love with.Someone that I can make my partner forever and be with for the rest of my life.A woman with a sense of humor.A caring,loving,faithful and loyal partner who I can trust for the rest of my life,and I hope you have all this as I seek.
I have attached some pics of me too in this email and I will love it if you could attach yours too.hoping to hear from you soon.Take care.
Sounds like a great guy. Too bad he doesn’t exist!
This is supposedly Kenneth Steven England, who originated from Chicago and was supposedly living in London. As you can see, the photos are small and no nametapes are discernible. Depending on how old these photos are, I may be able to find him since he wears a local patch.
This one is funny. These are supposedly photos of SSG Scott Adams from Fort Irwin, CA. Anyone that knows anything about the military will laugh when I say that the person behind these photos claims to be an ARMY SSG. When the potential victim forced the issue about pictures he changed his tune and stated he is a CSM in Baghdad. These are obviously photos of a Marine Corps Colonel. The fake Scott Adams stalks Facebook and myyearbook.com for his scams.
Okay, this next one cracks me up. Check out these photos:
I love the part on the back in the red little blotch that says “money back guarantee”! If we don’t kill the enemy, we’ll refund the cost of the war!! Here’s the photo that “Captain Cris Kepley” used to make his ID:
Good thing he brought his dress uniform to Iraq so they could create this wonderful Camp Victory ID badge!!
The douche using the photos above are of a guy who says he is in the US Army in Afghanistan. Don’t they all? He uses Badoo and his name is “Steve Lopez” but the same photos are used on other profiles calling himself Johnson. Same story:
“This Steve contacted me last week and he is a very nice person in his mess. He is an Officer in Afghanistan (though he’s wearing the uniform of a Sergeant) and have been there for 22 years and he will now retire in October. Then he will come to Sweden and marry me. And we will love each other forever. He had pray to God he should meet a girl like me and when he saw me at Badoo he thought God had made his wishes come true. He has a son in Tampa or Miami Florida, Been divorced 5 years ago. He had send me message every each morning and night but hadn’t asking for any money yet. He was telling me he was not allowed to give me his service number or his home address or his military email address cos of security (this is a lie and a classic tactic of scammers).”
He uses the email address email@example.com and will try to guilt you into believing him if you call his bluff by saying he will “kill himself”. Don’t fall for this tactic. Even if it were true, maybe it’s best if he just did it!
This guy calls himself Staff Sergeant Christian Richardson from Miami, FL. Again, ladies, you need to Google military ranks and you’ll see that this guy is not who he says he is.
The scammer using these photos goes by the name Marcus Movic and claims – like all these scammers – to be “a widower with a lovely Son” who’s wife was killed in an ac
cident while he was toiling in Iraq. The problem is that there is no Marcus Movic in the Army.