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“I just thought my prayers are being answered," she told VOA.

The relationship quickly intensified, and Schuster fell hard, emailing multiple times each day.

He responded that he would rather forget about the phone than to lose me. His commander contacted me and said he still needs ,000 before he can be released. He has been through so much on these deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.

It’s so unfair that the military would put all of these restrictions on them before releasing them.

The man she was communicating with knew all of her personal information, including where she lived. These scammers are professionals who know just how to tug your heartstrings. If you feel you have been scammed by a person claiming to be in the U. military, your best bet is to contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3).

This is serious because this woman put her life in jeopardy! The bottom line is that if you are communicating with a "service member" who starts asking you for money, don’t pass go. The people behind military dating scams do not give up easily. Scammers are frequently located overseas, limiting prosecution options U. Spending your money -- and more importantly the hours of your life -- on a scam artist is not bringing you closer to love.

One minute, he is in Afghanistan and the next minute he is in Africa.

Two days ago, he called me and said he needs money so he can come home. But you should know that bad guys use dating sites, too. If this “service member” swears he loves you and wants to marry you before he has even met you, beware. Report him to the website and stop communicating with him. Just because someone you met online gives you a name, rank, duty station or even military ID card, that doesn’t mean that this is a real person. If they ask you for money -- even a loan, this is a scam. During a year-long deployment, service members may be sent home for R&R. Commanding officers in the United States military do not call girlfriends, fiancées or family members asking for money. If someone you met online claims to be stranded in an airport, do not send them money. If these individuals really were in special ops, they would never tell you -- never. Deployments in the past have lasted up to fifteen months. If your family and friends think this is a scam, it is.

“His thing was, ‘well, this is top secret, we're fighting the terrorists, we can't do anything that would compromise that, so I can't use the phone.' And I believed all this," Schuster said. Shortly after the first wire transfer, the man told her that he wanted to get out of the Air Force and join some of his pilot friends in starting a private company that flies charter planes.

After a few weeks, the man told her he needed some money to help his daughter go on a school trip. She was told the military wouldn't let him access his bank accounts, so he needed her help to make his dream happen.

Each week, I get letters by email, on my website, by Twitter and on Facebook from women who are sending money to Africa and Afghanistan to help service members come home. These are not men who are in the United States military. I tried to raise the money but was making myself sick trying. I really need your help because I’m trying to help my Army guy from Fort Campbell.

Vicki, I met a sergeant in the Army on Facebook from the Zoosk dating site. He started asking me to send 0 for a secure phone line.

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Larry Williams, and he was in Afghanistan from Fort Campbell.