TAIPEI: An American man has been detained by police for allegedly defrauding at least three Taiwanese women who he met on an online dating site while posing as a weapons dealer, reports Apple Daily.
The suspect, Archie Boimah Richards, earlier this year told a Taiwanese woman he met on a dating website that he conducted an important arms sale with Taiwanese authorities, but that when he sent the money and goods to Taiwan, he was seized by customs officers. He told the woman that he needed money to resolve the issue with customs and she complied because she had fallen in love with the suspect.
He then instructed her to give the money to a friend of his in Taiwan and take his photo when she met with him. After she had made the transaction, she noticed that he started to ignore her and she began to feel as though she may have been cheated and reported the incident to police.
Once she told authorities her story, they found that at least two other women from other parts of Taiwan had accused him of fraud as well. Police are not yet certain whether he played both roles in the scam or if there is an accomplice.
When Richards was confronted by police, he denied any wrongdoing and said that he did not know the woman, even when they showed him her photo. Richards claims that he has been arrested and detained illegally, but Taipei District Court ruled that his claims were not valid and that he will continue to remain under custody until a trail is held on the case.
Netizens criticized the Taiwanese women for being so gullible and falling for any foreigner, regardless of skin color.