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Last Updated: Feb 19, 2015 - 9:44:28 PM 

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Guest Column

Women with wealth, protect yourselves
By Brigitte Knowles
Feb 19, 2015 - 9:44:15 PM

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Romeo Crime is Psycho Economic Domestic Violence that occurs when a man stages a false romantic relationship to steal assets from a woman. Daughters, mothers, grandmothers, students and businesswomen who have assets or good credit ratings and little debt can think that a Sweetheart Swindle can never happen to them.

Serial Financial Predators scout actively and prospect online, in person at the local charity ball, or while making repairs in a woman's home. Felons and unindicted con artists can present themselves as caring, sexy, funny, interested men and dance a woman off her feet, wanting to know everything about her right away. Too soon, women are telling them far too much, finding themselves deeply involved, in love with someone too good to be true, that they may never have otherwise looked at twice. How can this happen you ask?

These men are experienced, too good to be true professionals targeting lonely, recently widowed, single or married women who live an unbalanced life. Working too much, out of touch with their needs and wants, these ladies are unlikely to realize what is happening until it is over. Why are women so easy to steal credit and money from?

By nature, most women are determined, loyal volunteers who want to help mend broken people and won't give up until the man or his problem is fixed. By then Romeo is nowhere to be found because her money is all gone and there is nothing more for him to stick around for, no more supply of money or cars or businesses to steal.

Women are losing hundreds to hundreds of thousands of after tax dollars and cannot even get a worthless debt write off. In the best case scenario there is a paper trail because she gave him a check for the work he never finished or wired money online to a man she never met to help him pay for surgery for his sick child in another country.

If Law Enforcement doesn't press charges, these transactions are not seen as criminal. They are seen as consensual transfers of money in a romantic relationship, sexual, violent or not. Restraining Orders are only given if you are harmed or threatened.

An attorney can collect the debt in civil court, but get a judgment that cannot be attached to any income or asset because the perpetrator has long disappeared.

Beware of these despicable criminals. Protect yourself. Ask to see valid identification and verify credentials online through a reputable professional organization. A national credit check or criminal background report will give you true facts only if you have their real name.

If a man tries to romance you when they are working for you, realize that you are placing yourself at risk if you get involved. These men can say that you consented to giving them money, paid for their services, sexual or otherwise.

Romeo Crime can leave you heartbroken, broke, and take years to mend. For help, call a Domestic Violence Service near you.

Brigitte Knowles
Author of
The One That Got Away

Brigitte Knowles
is a financial security advisor and former deputy mayor of one of the largest cities in North America; a legislator who led the way for child support reform in Canada. She started a charity to help children of divorce and belongs to the National Association of Professional Women.

Her knowledge and experience should have protected her, yet she became a victim of Romeo crime and lost nearly everything. In serious debt and receiving no help from law enforcement at any level, she decided to write "The One That Got Away". Knowles uses personal experience as the basis of this book, pointing out that women most affected are mature women newly on their own, whether widowed or divorced, and in charge of their healthy finances for the first time.

"The One That Got Away"
by Brigitte Knowles
Publisher: iUniverse
Published 12/2/2014
ISBN-13: 9781491730980
368 Pages
Paperback $24

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