Thai Romance Scams and Internet Dating
Romance scams are a most common kind of fraud in Thailand, and are most often initiated by internet dating.
Many of the worst losses were with ladies who didn't overtly ask for money, but after they established the relationship and the man became heavily invested in both time and emotion, at which time the Thai girlfriend mentioned some hardships which could be solved with money, without actually asking for money. Many men have said they trusted the lady because she didn't ask for money, and volunteered to send much more money than they would have (if any) if the lady had specifically asked for money.
Many professional scammers know this, to not specifically ask for money, but only hint at hardships, or overtly raise them, or progress from light exposure towards more pressing needs until the man volunteers to send money at some point. Many scammers juggle multiple chats with various men, whereby the more reactive and generous ones may pay off quicker and bigger. They know that if the man doesn't volunteer money, and if she has to overtly ask for money, then the man is likely to be less lucrative in the long run. They may push to "cash in" the guy to get what they can and then drop him after they think they've gotten the last good payoff they will for awhile. After all, there are always more fools out there to harvest with their time and efforts.
There are many ploys along the lines of needing money, many stories and alleged situations and circumstances. One kind of trick is doctor and hospital expenses for the lady or her immediate family, and we have seen many fake receipts. We have ways of verifying the authenticity of some kinds of receipts.
Typically, the lady may use her own identity, as it can be difficult to prosecute a romance scam if it appears that it was a normal relationship in which the lady simply changed her mind before marriage. However, if the lady states false information with the intention of deceiving you into sending money, then you may have a chance to prosecute if you wish to pursue it and think it's worthwhile. Sometimes, the person on the other end uses a proxy and a fake ID (passport or ID card) with another person's name but the photo of the person you are seeing, which complicates things. In many cases, there has been a "scribe" involved, i.e., somebody else actually typing text messages pretending to be the lady part of the time.
Unfortunately, romance scams are a lucrative business for many ladies, and also some gangs.
When COVID occurred, nightclubs and bars were closed, and incoming flights dropped, there seemed to be a major ramp up in internet dating, though with more stories of COVID hardships, many of which were real, but some of which were questionable. Some of the prostitution realm moved online, but so did requests for money without physical meetings and services rendered based on romance scams.
In some cases, ladies (or their cohorts) put up profiles on internet dating to attract men to contact them, and in some other cases the lady initiated contact one way or another. Occasionally, a man who has come to us has mentioned that he got suspicious because a lady did not recall something they had discussed in text chat earlier, which made him wonder whether he was sometimes chatting with another person. Others have noted that a lady has apparently gotten him confused with somebody else.
Some people are very good at carrying on multiple parallel relationships.
We should clarify the difference between a scam vs. non-scam. It is a matter of intent and deception. We consider it a scam when there is deception involved with the intention of extracting money and without the intention of a sincere romantic relationship, and it may include false promises which the lady never really planned to follow through on.
On the other hand, it is not fraud when a person conducts multiple sincere relationships, such as for their own pleasure or to try to pick a most suitable partner for marriage by developing relationships with multiple candidates, whether secretly or overtly.
Matrimonial prostitution is not fraud if the lady just wants to marry a rich man for life and fulfills her commitments and obligations.
However, marriage can also be risky because a lady can use it to just be able to travel and then switch to a higher bidder overseas or even just run away and ply their trade. Further, they might try to extort additional money in order to agree to sign for a divorce.
Our native Thai researchers help to analyze these situations, and we can also do discreet surveillance.
Other parts of this website cover various romance scams and fraudulent activity. This page falls in our section of fraud and scams, but information on relationship investigations is generally in the section on Thai girlfriends.
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