A woman has revealed how she became the first victim of Tinder Swindler Simon Leviev, who duped her into using a stolen credit card, leaving her facing years in prison. Courtney Simmonds-Miller, 31, of Cambridge, first encountered the fraudster when she was 19 and living in Cyprus with her grandparents in 2008.
Who is Tinder Swindler’ Simon Leviev?
Shimon Heyada Hayut, 30, of Israel, used numerous aliases, including Simon Leviev, to deceive women on Tinder into believing he was the son of a millionaire diamond dealer before defrauding them of £7.4 million.
His victims told their stories in the Netflix documentary The Tinder Swindler, which was released earlier this month.
The convicted conman, who pretended to be ‘Simon Leviev,’ the son of billionaire Russian-Israeli diamond mogul Lev Leviev, would spend money on women he met on Tinder with luxurious trips and gifts paid for with money stolen from other victims. Then, he would ask his victim for money, claiming that he needed to protect his identity because of security concerns. Courtney Simmonds-Miller has described how the ‘Tinder Swindler’ Simon Leviev duped her into committing credit card theft.
Simon Leviev was revealed in the Netflix documentary The Tinder Swindler Simon Leviev was revealed for defrauding women out of an estimated £7.4 million.
When Courtney and Leviev, aged 20, worked together in a retail job, they became friends. She stated that she was ‘100% under [Leviev’s] spell’ and that the fraudster felt like her soulmate in friend form.
It didn’t take long for Leviev to start lying to Courtney. After a trip home to Israel, He told her he was a “hidden millionaire” who had only been working in Cyprus because his wealthy father wanted him to learn the value of money.
Courtney Simmonds-Miller has expressed her disgust with trolls labelling Leviev’s victims as “gold diggers,” claiming that he duped her without “all the immersive theatre and money.” However, he stated that he would receive his inheritance and start a business. Courtney has been invited to be his assistant. After taking the position and its £2,500 monthly compensation, one of her first jobs was to rent a BMW for Leviev, which she did under her name because he said he didn’t have an international driver’s licence.
For the transaction, Leviev provided credit card information. Courtney and Leviev were arrested after it was revealed that the card had been stolen in Israel. After being strip-searched, she spent three weeks imprisoned, describing the institution as “inhumane.”
‘The cell was disgusting, and there were cockroaches everywhere. There were no doors on the showers or toilets and the loo itself was just a hole in the floor,’ she said. Despite having their passports seized, Leviev was able to depart the country, prompting authorities to inform Courtney that she would be held responsible for his crimes. ‘It was horrific. He left me to take the fall for everything,’ she said.
Courtney’s grandmother paid a lump sum of money to keep her out of jail, and the family ultimately paid more than £14,000 before she was acquitted after two years. Courtney said thinking about Leviev’s misdeeds makes her ‘feel sick,’ found out that he had scammed other women after reading an article in a Norwegian newspaper revealing how one of his victims, Cecilie Fjellhoy, was defrauded of £185,000. Leviev was never charged with defrauding the women, but he was imprisoned in Israel in 2019 for using a fraudulent passport in Greece. After five months of excellent behaviour, he was released.
Where Is Simon Leviev From The Tinder Swindler Now? https://t.co/DY3PyIbiuD
— People (@people) February 16, 2022
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