If he promises you the world then it’s likely he won’t deliver. One unfortunate Norwegian woman learnt that the hard way when she was conned out of $200,000 by an Israeli playboy who dubbed himself the ‘Prince of Diamonds’.
Cecilie Fjellhoy, 29, met Shimon Hayut, 28, on Tinder after the pair matched. She claims that she was swept off her feet by the ‘diamond dealer’ who would eventually swindle her and leave her mentally unstable after the ordeal.
“It’s just so painful. I just hate myself that I did this,” Fjellhoy told ABC News.
“I had to be put into a hospital. Psychiatric ward. Because of suicidal thoughts because I thought my life was over, like I didn’t see a way out. You’ve lost your boyfriend but he didn’t just dump you, he never existed, he was never your boyfriend.”
Shimon Hayut had convinced Fjellhoy that he was Simon Leviev, the son of Jewish billionaire diamond merchant Lev Leviev. Just four weeks into their courtship he requested that Fjellhoy take out a line of credit for him in her name as security measure against potential threats against his safety.
Hayut managed to use this ‘confidence fraud’ scheme to victimise multiple Scandinavian women and had previously been jailed in a Finnish prison for three years using the same tactics.
So what did Hayut spend the money on? Seducing other women.
After tricking Fjellhoy into applying for an American Express platinum card with a falsified income of $200,000, the ‘Tinder Swindler’ began maxing out the card, racking up two million Norwegian krone ($200,671) in expenses over 54 days. These expenses apparently went towards paying for Hayut’s two assistants, a bodyguard and flights around the world.
Fjellhoy told the Norwegian paper VG that her money was being spent on Louboutins in Bangkok, Gucci in Barcelona, accommodation at the Ritz Carlton in Berlin and at the Conservatory in Amsterdam. $75,000 was spent on the AMEX between March 2 and March 25. He was also using the money to seduce another Swedish female named Pernilla Sjoholm. Hayut apparently used the same ‘son of a billionaire’ story.
Sjoholm told VG that she also wired Hayut money to the sum of $35,000. This is on top of the $10,000 that Hayut took from Fjellhoy before using it to take his new girlfriend to the opera via limousine.
Whilst the swindle may seem obvious to some, Fjellhoy admits that she was taken in by his charms and believed Hayut was a real CEO who would eventually reimburse her. She says her own feelings of love towards Hayut were genuine but he was seducing other women at the same time he was sending her sweet good morning messages.
Fjellhoy says that she has learnt her lesson from the experience and is much less naive and trusting. Hayut, according to the Times of Israel, has been wanted for crimes in relation to theft, forgery and fraud since 2011. He also has a record in England, Norway and Sweden.