Police have arrested an Alberta man after a local woman was allegedly swindled out of thousands of dollars in a romance scam.
Orillia OPP were notified in April 2017 of a suspected fraud in which the victim sent more than $25,000 to the alleged fraudster.
Following a lengthy investigation, police identified Albert Gyamfi, 35, of Edmonton as the suspect.
In August 2019, Gyamfi was arrested in Alberta and charged with fraud over $5,000 and possession of property obtained by crime.
He is scheduled to appear at the Ontario court of justice in Orillia on Dec. 24.
The OPP said that Gyamfi was also a suspect in connection with similar frauds in other jurisdictions in Ontario.
Romance scammers use dating and social networking websites, among other forums, to defraud victims after gaining their trust.
“Humans are social beings, and these scam artists know this,” Const. Martin Hill told Simcoe.com.
While Canadians reported $22.5 million lost to romance scams in 2018, police estimate that the actual figure is 20 times greater, as most victims don’t report their losses.
For more information on how to recognize the signs of fraud, go to antifraudcentre.ca.