Saturday, February 25, 2006

Nigeria Goes Deaf

Apparently the entire country of Nigeria has lost its hearing.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

When Dice Games Go Bad

Feel free to read the article yourself, but here's a summary:

Fredrick T. Woods takes $20,000 to a private craps game in William Green's basement and loses it all. The next day, he finds out that Green used "bad dice" and decides he wants his money back. As if he hadn't been stupid enough already, Woods decides to call his buddy "Meatball" and enlist his help in kidnapping Green.

After kidnapping Green and forcing him at gunpoint to call several acquaintances in hopes of coming up with the $20K, Woods is arrested by police and charged with several crimes that could put him in jail for up to 32 years and cost him $55,000 in fines.

What a bunch of morons.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

It was the DRUGS!

People can sue over anything. This guy couldn't have POSSIBLY been responsible for pissing away $14 million dollars... it must have been someone else's fault.

I'll tell you one thing, though... if you are looking to make a quick buck you should probably find a poker game that includes a bunch of rich folks who suffer from Parkinson's disease.

The Grift as Entertainment

A good hustle is always entertaining, but apparently the BBC and AMC (for those of us on this side of the big pond) have taken it to a new level.

Fans of the scams might want to check out "Hustle" for themselves. It looks like a fun show.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

When I Get That Feeling, I Need...

As far as scams go, the old "spiritual healer" gag is a dinosaur. It was the bread-and-butter of many gypsies (travellers, pikeys, etc.) for decades, but it still keeps showing up.

The lastest practicioner is calling himself "Iqbal" and has been working over Union City, CA.

Apparently he's duped over 20 people out of funds totalling more than $1M while promising the people that he can give them winning lottery numbers at the rate of $10,000 per million to be won. Give the guy $40K and he'll give you numbers worth $4 million. If only it were that easy.

To top it off, he even dusted off the tired, old contaminated egg routine. This time, however, instead of the egg containing a tumor or cancer it contains a slip of paper with the victim's name and winning lottery numbers.

You gotta give the guy points for creativity, I guess. As far as I know, he's still at large.

Playing with the Big Boys

Those of you who read (or watched) "Catch Me If You Can" and thought that Frank Abagnale could never get away with such a brash scheme in today's world, think again. Check out Michael Cassini, but hold on to your wallet. He racked up fraudulent gains of $4.5M+ by the time he was 26 years old. This guy went from working as a temp at Microsoft (where he was canned because he didn't have adequate computer skills) to claiming that he was a "Microsoft Millionaire" and taking out (and defaulting on) huge loans at a number of Seattle and Silicon Valley banks.

I guess it was a good ride while it lasted. After running through $60K per month, buying a collection of Porches and Ferraris and putting down a deposit on a $5.6M airplane, he was finally caught.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Back again

Sorry for the hiatus, but Hurricane Katrina preempted my plans. I was in the process of planning a trip to Nawlins when the storm hit, and watching the whole drama unfold on television and the Web affected me more than I expected.

I haven't been back yet, but I'm hoping to take a road trip pretty soon. I just hope that the French Quarter keeps its character and flavor. Flood waters can clean out an area much more thoroughly than the police ever could.