Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today. What makes you think he is a scammer?
The first important thing you should be aware of is that it is never possible to state with certainty whether someone you have met online is genuine or not unless you have actually met them in person. Therefore, there will inevitable be a degree of speculation involved.
With the anonymity of the internet, there has been a very significant increase in romance scams that involve military personnel. The main way to identify such scams is not by tracing the person, which as mentioned would often be impossible, but by looking at the overall situation and identifying certain 'red flags'. In this case I am 100% confident that this person is a scammer and I will explain why below by covering the most common factors that suggest this:
1. You have met this person online, usually through a dating or social networking website, or instant messaging.
2. They will claim that they are a serving soldier with the Army and are currently based abroad.
3. They will strike a long-distance relationship with you, they are very pleasant and romantic, some even fall in love straight away. They may take time to gain your trust, although often the relationship progresses unnaturally fast.
4. They will always use a free email address that is not affiliated to the Army. It may look like it's genuine but it won't be. If they are in the US Army then they will have an official email that ends with "us.army.mil". You can request that they provide you with that address and communicate through it, but often they will refuse to do so.
5. You can actually check to see if they are a serving member of the armed forces by going here: https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/appj/scra/scraHome.do - you will need their name, date of birth, and Social Security Number, however if they are genuine and have nothing to hide they should not refuse to give you this information.
6. They often ask for money, citing various reasons, which usually include: fees to have their leave authorised, travel expenses, etc. However, the golden rule is that soldiers will never be expected to pay to take leave or travel home so none of these requests are genuine. Here are some examples of these scams: http://marriedtothearmy.com/are-you-dating-an-army-soldier-or-a-fake/
7. They request that the payment is made via some dubious money transfer method, with little or no fraud protection, such as Western Union, Moneygram, etc. These methods are also commonly used as the person on the other side will be extremely difficult to trace
If the above looks familiar, chances are that the person you are involved with is a fraudster and you need to proceed with extreme caution, if at all. I strongly suggest you cease all contact with the person and certainly not send anything to them.
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