My name is Nick Kacija, and I wanted to write about my experience with a Ukrainian scammer and how I got justice in the end. I am an American citizen, and in October of 2022, I met a young woman through a dating app. We began to video chat a lot, and she claimed she was a doctor, not being paid on time, and being forced into the Russo-Ukrainian War because she works in medicine. She was very convincing, had an innocent face, and was a master liar. Verifying much of the information she told me was difficult because I don’t live in Ukraine. I had no connections there, and the US embassy was not very helpful in verifying what she told me.
She swindled over $6000 within six months to supposedly help her get out of the draft, pay her rent (said work wasn’t paying her on time due to war), help her pay for a flight to the USA, and meet minimum financial requirements to leave the border (likely a lie). I also helped her and her cousin (who I discovered was her lover later) get a visa under the U4U humanitarian war refuge program to come to the USA, but they never came.
I finally realized it was one big lie when she requested a large sum of $5000 to remove a new military conscript just days before her visa to come to the USA expired on March 14th, 2023. She became non-responsive after I told her I could not send her that large amount of money and that I started to become very suspicious that she requested this large amount just before her visa expired. The last correspondence I told her is that I now realize her story was one big manipulative lie and will expose her if she does not return the money I sent her. She still stuck to her story and said I volunteered to give her the money, but I told her that was based on misinformation which is considered fraud. I also confronted her about her cousin being her lover, which I later discovered (with some assistance) through hidden social media accounts.
So my friends and family told me to forget about the whole experience, but I was angry, and my heart was broken. She made me look like a fool. I felt it was very wrong what she was doing using the war in Ukraine to profit; she was probably using the same story with other men and needed to be stopped! So, my goal was to expose her and her lover/accomplice.
I began my plan first by searching for any existing websites that expose Ukrainian scammers and ran into Ukrainian-Passport.com. I interacted with their team who was very helpful and helped me verify many inconsistencies in this woman’s story. Fortunately, he affirmed that the passport information she had given me was accurate, which was unusual for a scammer, but this made exposing her and getting justice easier in the end. Ukrainian-Passport.com posted my story and some evidence of this woman and her accomplice on his website. So if someone or other victims ran into her, they could discover more about her if they searched her name on the Internet.
In addition, I bought the domain name of this woman’s name and created a website myself that exposed her (and her accomplice) further that ran parallel with Ukrainian-Passport.com website. Fortunately, a victim from Israel reached out to me and contacted me through my website. He was actively communicating with her and was conned of $1000 already. She was using the same deceptive story, as she did with me, to this victim. We collaborated, with assistance from Ukrainian-Passport.com as well, to try and coordinate a way to locate this woman and get her arrested.
I also exposed her (and her accomplice) through social media with the help of a young Ukrainian woman living in Ukraine who felt terrible about what happened to me. This exposure proved to be very effective because many people responded with sympathy and who knew of them. It quickly affected their reputation in their city. I even found an excellent criminal lawyer through a referral by one of the posts. Someone else who knew the scammer also emailed me her exact location after reading the posts.
I now had all the resources and knowledge to get this woman finally caught! The scammer also contacted me and said she would now be willing to return the money she stole from me. She had no choice because she knew she was close to being arrested and needed to mend her reputation. The criminal lawyer also said it is better to try and negotiate with her and retrieve the funds because the case could be complicated in their country, he said the courts like for both parties to be present, and we lived in different countries. He also said I would be fortunate even to get the money back because most victims do not, in these cases.
Ultimately, I made a deal with the scammer to return my funds and the other victim. I told her that if she did, I would not continue the process of arresting her and would remove all of the information about her on the Internet and social media. It took her a few days, but in the end, she came through, I received my money back, and she apologized for her actions. I hope she has learned from her mistakes and becomes a better person in the future. I believe in the human spirit and that no one is born evil, and there are reasons why people stray along the wrong path in life sometimes. She was also relatively young, under 25 years of age.
The lesson I learned here is that one must be very careful in international romance affairs. It is hard to verify many facts, and this woman also took advantage of the war situation there. It affected me emotionally because people are suffering and dying in this Russo-Ukrainian War. I thought by helping this woman and her accomplice financially and leaving to come to the USA; I would be helping the cause. Love also makes you blind sometimes, and you must be cautious in this world of many manipulators of financial gain. I wish I had found Ukrainian-Passport.com earlier when I met her. This way, I could verify what this woman was saying. Good luck to all of you searching for real love and happiness!
Mistakes are the portals of discovery ~ James Joyce