Romance Scammer Dupes Women, Steals £300k


A man who defrauded women out of more than £300,000 to fund his extravagant lifestyle has been sentenced to seven years in prison. Cieran McNamara, 37, from Coventry, posed as a successful businessman and manipulated four wealthy women into believing they were in a loving relationship with him. He would then fake emergencies to trick them into sending him large sums of money, according to Chester Crown Court.

Detective Constable Victoria Hazlewood of Cheshire Constabulary described McNamara as a serial fraudster who blurred the lines between reality and fantasy. He deceived his victims into thinking he was a millionaire with properties across the country, while he was actually unemployed and living out of a suitcase.

McNamara, also known as Ciaran Griffin, Christian McNamara, and Myles McNamara, met his victims online and in high-end hotels and clubs. He convinced them of his wealth by showing them pictures of himself at mansions in London and Cheshire and sharing images of his first-class travels around the world. He also lavished them with gifts, trips, and expensive dinners, all funded by money he had conned from other women.

Between 1 September 2022 and 25 September last year, McNamara defrauded four women in Cheshire, Warwickshire, and Hertfordshire out of £302,054.26. His scheme was exposed when one of his victims in Cheshire alerted the police.

Following an investigation by the Cheshire Constabulary Economic Crime Unit, McNamara was arrested in Colchester on 28 September and charged with four counts of fraud by false representation. A search of a storage unit rented by McNamara revealed about £19,500 worth of new items, including a £1,900 Burberry coat, a £400 Burberry scarf, Gucci trainers, and a Ping golf set. Efforts to locate other assets belonging to him are ongoing.

During the sentencing, Judge Simon Berkson highlighted McNamara’s history of similar offences and lack of remorse for his victims as significant aggravating factors. He also noted that McNamara posed a real risk in the future.

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