A woman was scammed out of $100,000 after a catfisher claiming to be Bruno Mars, convinced her they two were in a romantic relationship.
According to multiple reports, a man has been charged with money laundering, which is a third-degree felony, after pretending to be the Grammy-nominated artist and bilking money out of his victim.
The alleged victim, a Texas woman in her 60’s, was apparently targeted by sending her photos and text messages appearing to be from the singer while he was on tour.
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According to the charging documents, a man named Chinwendu Azuonwu reportedly was able to make the woman fall in love with the fake Bruno Mars and then began to ask for money.
One check was reportedly made out for $10,000 and was asked to be directed to a “friend of the band” for “touring expenses,” according to local station KTRK-TV.
After making the initial payment, the man was reportedly able to convince her to make $90,000 in additional payments, totaling $100,000.
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According to reports, after the initial check was cashed the man used an alleged accomplice named Basil Amadi, who was partially responsible for getting the second round of money sent to them.
Anuonwu appeared in a Harris County, Texas court on Tuesday, according to Fox News, and is expected to re-appear in court today for a bail review hearing.
According to one report, the relationship started after the 63-year-old woman claims she made Instagram account in 2018 and was contracted by the fake Bruno Mars.
She claimed the catfisher claimed he was leaving the tour to come and be with her.
Interestingly, law enforcement told the local media the two maybe ‘low-level’ scammers working for a much bigger ring overseas, and are hoping they can go after the much larger organization.