Man tricks online scammer into sending him money, gives it to charity

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A 22-year-old student at Ireland’s University of Limerick says he successfully turned the tables on an internet scammer by tricking the person into sending him money.

The scammer originally claimed to be offering Ross Walsh a piece of a lucrative stock-trading business for just £1,000, according to screenshots he shared with BBC News. Walsh responded by saying he wanted to invest £50,000, but he’d need the scammer to send him £25 to unfreeze his bank’s fraud protections.

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“I told him this was very interesting, but that I thought £1,000 was an insult and that I wanted to give £50,000,” Walsh told BBC.

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Walsh also convinced the scammer to adopt a code-word system based on his favourite sport, hurling, as they exchanged messages about the phantom £50,000 last month.

“I want to waste their time so they’re not wasting anyone else’s,” Walsh said.

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Walsh says he used a doctored screenshot to convince the scammer, supposedly named “Solomon Gundi,” that he was a big-business banker with money to spend. He sent the scammer a photoshopped receipt for the £50,000, then asked for a bit of money in return to avoid scam-detection services at the bank.

“I said they don’t want to release the funds unless they see a small sum of money going from his account to my account just to prove this isn’t a scam,” Walsh said.

“He fell for it.”

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Walsh says he donated the £25 to the Irish Cancer Society.

He told the Limerick Reader that he’s tricked scammers this way three times in the past. He says he was inspired by a comedian who shares videos of himself duping fraudsters online.

“If I continue to get the emails I’ll keep trying,” he said.

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He told Irish radio personalities Dermot & Dave that he enjoys turning the tables of people who try to scam others out of their money.

“It just goes to show how gullible they actually are,” he said.

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