Kate Roberts, 47, was swindled out of £80,000 after fraudsters posted a bogus profile on a dating website.Miss Roberts contacted US army sergeant Mark Ray Smith, a handsome 43-year-old widower with an 11-year-old daughter, after seeing the profile on the dating area of Friends Reunited.
An email from “Sgt Smith” read: “I can’t help being madly in love with you.
They say love is in the eye of the beholder and there are bound to be many lonely hearts companions look for someone just like you.
These sites make it much easier to meet these interesting people with advanced features like personal photo downloads, advanced love matching facilities and sms texting etc.
“I had to sell my house to pay my debts, my credit score is through the roof so I cannot have any credit, mortgage or overdraft.
“Hundreds of other women must be being conned.” Miss Roberts was persuaded to send money to a bank account and via Western Union after “Sgt Smith” said he wanted to buy himself out of the army so they could live together.