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Sham dater caught for cheating women out of money

A serial dater has been detained for allegedly cheating at least four women out of nearly 200,000 yuan (US$30,480), police said today.

The 26-year-old suspect surnamed Chen claimed he was a rich businessman and rented luxury cars when dating women he met online, police said.

Chen was dating several women at the same time and was detained on March 11 after a victim alerted police in Changning District.

The woman told the police that she had been conned out of 60,000 yuan one week into her relationship with Chen. Chen was caught while withdrawing cash from a bank, police said.

In his profile on a popular matchmaking website, Chen claimed he had graduated from Harvard University and owned a business in the city, police said. After winning trust of his victims by taking them to high-end bars in a luxury car, he would make up a story to borrow money from them.

He would lie that he needed money for his business or to cover car accident compensation, police said.

"I was blinded by his well-off background," said one woman, who declined to be named.

Police said the suspect was unemployed and used swindled money to look rich. Officers are looking for more victims as the investigation goes on. Some of the cheated money has been recovered, they said.

Meanwhile, police warned that some dating services hire men to pose as daters, duping women into joining their customer lists.


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