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Judith
Judith, Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 28188
Experience:  34 years as practicing immigration attorney, with non-immigrant and immigrant visa experience.
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Someone explain this to me. Some woman I have been talking

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Someone explain this to me. Some woman I have been talking to for three or so months says she is an italian stuck in nigeria wanting to come to the U.S, but she can't because of a BTA. Now for the three months we been talking she hasn't asked for any money (shocker) and is confused herself because she never had to pay a BTA before when she came to the states. And she still hasn't asked for money. So what is going on here?

Hello,my name is Judith. Thank you for this opportunity to answer your questions.

She is baiting you. There is no such thing as BTA. That stands for Basic Travel Allowance.

Italians enter the US on the Visa Waiver Program and they need to show neither funds nor a visa!



Normally the scam starts with
trying to establish a romantic relationship, perhaps just a friendship at
first. They also may claim to be a citizen of the UK or US or wherever so that
you would not suspect they have any ulterior motive. They pull at your
heartstrings by telling stories of hardship or tragedy that they have suffered
in their life. At some point they want to come visit. They may ask you to send
money for a passport and/or plane ticket. They may tell you that they have
money, perhaps even that they are wealthy, but their money is tied up or
something like that, perhaps they tie it into a tragedy or something. Then the
next step is when they supposedly have the passport and plane ticket, they
suddenly come up with this Basic Travel Allowance or (BTA) which is supposedly
to show authorities that they have enough money to fund their trip. This is a
lie. There is no such thing. They ask you to send that money so they can put it
into a bank account to show the authorities. This is just another method to
steal money from you. Then the next part of the scam would be when they are
supposed to arrive. You wait for them at the airport and they never show up. A
few days go by, you get extremely worried, none of your methods of
communication work, and then suddenly a "friend" or
"relative" of the scammer contacts you to let you know that she has
been detained/arrested by authorities for carrying something illegal, I have
heard of unregistered gold and they say it would have been a gift for you
(perhaps to pay you back for the money you sent). The friend or relative of the
scammer then asks for you to send money to bribe or pay fines in order to have
the scammer released. From there, I have not heard of how else they are able to
get money out of people. Of course there are variations to the scheme, but
that's pretty much how it goes.

The US Embassy London addresses the BTA scam at this link

http://london.usembassy.gov/cons_new/acs/scs/internet_scams.html

 

Here is a link that you can go to for more information:

 

http://ghana.usembassy.gov/romance_scam.html



http://www.romancescams.org/WhatIsARomanceScam.html

 

If you have an image of the person you can check it here

 

http://www.google.com/insidesearch/features/images/searchbyimage.html



Trust me, the hit is coming.

 

Judith

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