A 72-year-old woman told Oxford police earlier this month that she had been the victim of a scam in which the suspect had bilked her out of approximately $50,000 over nearly three months after she had been introduced to him by an acquaintance who told her he was her nephew.
That introduction occurred Dec. 10, the victim told police, and the woman soon left the area, but the nephew was familiar to the victim who often saw him in the library.
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He continued to drop by her residence and told her he was starting a non-profit company called TESPA to help underprivileged children. He gave her a rubber desktop mat with that name on it. During the investigation, the officer found a gaming company by that name but no non-profit.
The victim said she loaned the subject approximately $25,000 cash between Dec. 10 and the end of February in increments of $1,500 to $5,000. She also said she loaned him her credit card, which he used to charge approximately $14,000 over a two-month period. She also gave him $9,000 cash to buy a round-trip plane ticket to Alaska to visit his sister, who was on life support.
The uncharged suspect in the case was often accompanied by another subject and told her they were both sophomores at Miami University, but Miami has no record of either of them as students, according to police.
The victim told police she gave the two approximately $800 for several cell phones and they gave her one but later took it back. She said one of them had given her his phone number, but when she tried calling, it was a restricted number.
She said she became suspicious when they did not come to her residence as promised on Feb. 24.
On a follow-up visit with the victim, the officer was told she had received two letters from her bank’s fraud department that a transaction for $5,000 had been turned down by the bank because it was suspicious. The name on the transaction was the same as one of the two men who had been getting money from her. The officer checked with the bank and was told that was an attempted on-line transaction which had been denied.
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