One victim, Kevin McCrary, a 56-year-old Manhattan business consultant, would not dispute that. After falling prey to a fake postal money order scheme, he said, "I couldn't reach around far enough to kick myself." Single and lonely, Mr. McCrary joined an international online dating site, Elitemate.com. In late January, he was contacted by someone claiming to be a young woman from Nigeria. She – or perhaps he, or even they, Mr. McCrary now concedes – went by the name of Ogisi Douglas. Their e-mail exchanges were barely a week old before the supposed Ms. Douglas asked Mr. McCrary for his help buying a laptop computer. Mr. McCrary purchased a $1,500 laptop, and after he received two United States postal money orders for $950 each, he sent the laptop to an address in Nigeria. Neither Mr. McCrary nor the teller at the J. P. Morgan Chase branch where he deposited the postal money orders knew they were bogus. It was only after he was asked to buy more computers and received several more postal money orders that he discovered, after trying to cash them at a post office, that he had been duped.
Seriously: how dumb do you have to be in order to qualify for status as the Nigerian email spam-scammers' target customer? It's become a cliche' – there's now a hot trend in scamming the scammers right back and making them look extremely foolish. It's hard to tell who's dumb and who's dumber: McCrary is still in contact with his scammer, who apparently is unaware that the Grey Lady has run the story and revealed all. He received a greeting card from the "lady" recently.
"It is often said that nobody is perfect," Ogisi Douglas wrote in a greeting card to Mr. McCrary three weeks ago. "But my love for you have made me blind to your faults and imperfections."