A woman from Russia was conned out of £11,500 after someone contacted her pretending to be the Australian actor Chris Hemsworth.
The 42-year-old woman, from Irkutsk, recently told police that she was contacted at a time when her marriage was in crisis, and she was looking to spice up her life, thereby arguably making herself more vulnerable to the cruel hoax.
The unnamed woman apparently received a tweet out of the blue, from someone claiming to be the 35-year-old actor.
Speaking to a local newspaper, the woman explained how it all went down.
She said, via The Siberian Times:
Our marriage was going well until recently when we had several serious arguments. Our relations went quite sour, and just then the actor sent me a message on Twitter.
The message apparently read: ‘Hey, I am Chris Hemsworth, I am a famous actor from Australia, I live in California. You are so pretty, can we chat?’
The woman added:
I am not a fan, but he is still a very attractive man. I checked him online and saw that he was married and had three children.
I thought, what if he was in the same situation as I was, that on the face of it we were both married and at the same time very lonely.
Seduced by exciting prospects of the famous actor, the 42-year-old said she was messaging him for two months. The person pretending to be Hemsworth had been asking to meet her in Australia, but later said he was coming to Russia.
It was then that the con artist started to ask her for money.
An Irkutsk city police source said:
The woman said that she was separately contacted by the actor’s lawyer, who told her that ‘Chris’ was going through temporary financial difficulties.
He needed money to pay for visa, insurance and parking for his private jet in Siberia.
The lawyer asked her to transfer money and sent her Chris’s driving license as a guarantee of a payback.
Unfortunately, the Russian woman believed it to be genuine, and went along with the request. She took out a loan and reportedly paid around 1 million roubles (roughly £11,500) to who she thought were Chris Hemsworth and his lawyers.
After she had transferred the money, however, the social media accounts were promptly deleted.
Police are now set to open a criminal investigation into the case.
In a statement, Irkutsk police said:
We urge everyone not to stay in contact with strangers and not to send anything to people you are not familiar with.
Though Hemsworth isn’t in the habit of flying to Siberia to be with a woman he’s never met, it seems he does enjoy picking up hitchhikers in Australia.
Hemsworth, along with his friend, Luke Zocchi, were recently driving through Brisbane when they spotted musician and ‘world traveller’ Scott Hildebrand on the side of the road, holding a sign asking to be taken to Byron Bay. So, naturally, they picked him up.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.