The FBI announced that “John Edward Taylor allegedly trolled dating websites to find unsuspecting women for his ‘romance’ scam, designed to steal their money.”  The January 3, 2017 FBI news release entitled “Alleged Confidence Man Charged With Luring Victims Through Matchmaking And Networking Sites To Commit Fraud And Identity Theft” included these comments about Taylor’s behavior:

While masquerading as a millionaire businessman with romantic and professional interest in his victims, Taylor was in reality an alleged con artist.  When confronted by some of his victims for looting their bank accounts, Taylor took his insidious crime another step further, allegedly threatening to release sexually explicit photos of them.

Here are some details from the Complaint and Indictment:

JOHN EDWARD TAYLOR, a/k/a “Jay Taylor,” a/k/a “Josie Reeser,” stole, or attempted to steal, money, credit, and personal information from more than a dozen women (the “Victims”) in cities across the country, including New York City, Chicago, Atlanta, and Philadelphia.

TAYLOR contacted Victims using online matchmaking and networking websites, such as Match.com, eHarmony, Craigslist, and Seeking Arrangement.  TAYLOR typically introduced himself as “Jay” and often falsely described himself as a wealthy businessman with oil and land interests in North Dakota.  To some Victims, TAYLOR feigned interest in hiring the Victims to work on a new business TAYLOR purported to be creating.  To other Victims, TAYLOR expressed an interest in a romantic and personal relationship.  To most Victims, TAYLOR purported to be interested in both a personal and a professional relationship.

Obviously people going to matchmaking sites and using social media need to aware of this type of criminal behavior!