Friday, March 21, 2008

Sweetheart Scams Alive and Well

Riverside, California.USA By JESSICA LOGAN PE.Com

A 34-year-old woman was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of stealing from a 79-year-old Riverside man who police said she had talked into proposing marriage, a news release from the Riverside Police Department stated.

Nina Costello of Perris befriended the 79-year-old man. She promised to help him do "Christ's work," the release stated.

The man, recently widowed, lived in a federally subsidized apartment on Social Security, the release stated.

The woman convinced the man to furnish her home where she told him he would eventually live and buy her a car, the release stated.

An associate of the woman, who police identified as Larry Thompson, 35, also of Perris, told the 79-year-old man that he was the woman's brother and talked the man into giving him money.
The woman used the victim's credit to buy about $80,000 worth of property including a 2007 Chevrolet Tahoe, furnishings and an engagement ring that police found at a pawn shop, the release stated.

Costello and Thompson were arrested on suspicion of theft by false pretenses and elder abuse.
By law, policing agencies are not allowed to release to the public the names of people who they believe are victims of elder abuse.

Anyone who knows about this case or who may have been victimized is asked to call Riverside police Detective Brian Money at 951-353-7118.

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