IDIOT of the year

A woman in Oregon recently was a “victim” of the infamous Nigerian scam despite repeated warnings from her family, her bank, and law enforcement officials to keep sending more money. I put “victim” in quotes because she did not heed warnings from her family, her bank, and law enforcement officials not to send any more money. In fact, law enforcement has threatened to charge her with a crime if she sends any more money, and she admits that this is the only thing stopping her from doing so.

At first, Janella Spears was supposed to send $100. She did so. I can actually see some people falling for this, but what comes next is unbelievable.

Then they informed her (via official looking documents filled with spelling errors) that she needed to send $8,300 in order to claim $26 million. (Yeah, right.) She did so, but didn’t get the money. Then she got another letter… this kept going on for several years, during which she drained her family’s finances to send over $400,000 despite the repeated warnings.

I have absolutely no sympathy for this greedy woman, but I feel sorry for her husband, whose retirement funds were wiped out.

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5 Responses

  1. This is so scary on so many levels. First of all that people are capable of doing this and especially scary that some people fall for it. How awful for this woman’s family.

  2. That is really quite sad. You’d think after the first couple times the husband would start transferring money into an account she couldn’t access.

  3. @maria: Yes, it is really scary how people get really obsessed with material things.

    @Elle: I was wondering about that.

  4. This will sound totally sarcastic, yet I can’t help but think it. Perhaps these correspondences made her feel needed somehow. Like that disease Munchhausen where the person gets attention by having (usually their children ) be sick and they are constantly living in hospital emergency rooms. Quite frankly since you said it went on for years, is any one REALLY that STUPID? Falling for it is one thing, but for years on end. Somethings up.

  5. @Allison: Now I’m thinking this is kind of like the eBay syndrome, where bidders feel that they have to win an auction at any cost. But why did the husband not do anything???

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