Lonely Hearts Scam

Tim McMurray went looking for love online... What he found instead was a scam.

A beautiful woman by the name of Lois professed her love for the 61-year-old but he says he had a feeling it wasn't legit." My history is... I haven't had a lot of really hot women in my life... So too good to be true came into the picture." said McMurray.

Within weeks the online scammer was trying to use McMurray to launder stolen money from a Beverly Hills company.  The scammers sent it to him and had him try to send it to a man in Georgia who was later arrested.  

The money was returned to the company.  The FBI says... McMurray is one of more than 18 thousand victims of what are called business email compromise or BEC scams since October of 2013.

Southern California is a hot bed of this kind of cyber criminal activity with more than 5 million dollars in losses per month.

During a news conference... The FBI explained how the scam works. Criminals impersonate CEO's or other company heads and instruct CFO's via email to wire money into an account that appears to be part of a legitimate business deal.

The funds are then wired to money mules...Like Tim McMurray, the mules are often unknowingly recruited from dating websites... The FBI says the elderly are especially vulnerable.

Debbie Lefever and her siblings learned their 80-year-old mother fell prey to a similar scam while grieving the loss of her longtime companion.  But not before she lost thousands of dollars to man claiming to be an engineer in Washington state.  

"Through 3 different wire transfers she sent 23 thousand dollars to Malaysia." said the victim's son David Weil.

The money was never recovered the suspect never caught.

As for Tim McMurray... He's glad he could help the FBI. He's also  still looking for love online but jokingly says, "Now I 'm looking for ugly."

How to report this type of cyber crime: http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx

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