Serial cheating men

25 Signs of a Serial Cheater

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Serial cheaters can sometimes be hard to avoid. In the beginning stages of a relationship, they may be charming and attentive, but as time goes on, they begin to reveal their serial cheater traits. 

Sometimes, the signs of a serial cheater can be subtle and difficult to recognize. If you want to avoid the pain of being stuck with an unfaithful partner, it is helpful to know red flags to look out for in our relationship.

Here, learn the signs and characteristics of serial cheaters so you can keep yourself safe from heartbreak. 

Serial cheater meaning: What does it mean to be a serial cheater?

So, what is a serial cheater? Everyone makes mistakes, and some people may stray in their relationships, regret the behavior, and commit to change. 

Serial cheaters, on the other hand, don’t even try to avoid cheating. They seek out opportunities to cheat. 

One of the core serial cheater traits is a lack of remorse over cheating. Serial cheaters don’t feel any guilt or shame over their behavior because they see nothing wrong with cheating. 

They are repeat cheaters because they view straying in relationships as being acceptable. 

A serial cheater may be involved in a committed relationship. 

However, they will still be active on dating websites, or they will see no problem with going out without their significant other and finding opportunities to hook up. 

As far as they are concerned, they have no obligation to be loyal to their partners. 

25 Signs of a serial cheater

If you’re wondering if maybe you’re beginning to fall victim to a serial cheater, there are red flags you can look for to protect yourself from further damage. 

Below, consider 25 signs of a serial cheater, so you know when it’s time to get out before you’re in too deep:

1. They talk about repeated infidelity in past relationships

One of the top signs of a serial cheater is someone who has cheated repeatedly in the past. They may mention having cheated in former relationships, but they promise they have changed. 

The fact that they’re willing to admit that they’ve cheated several times in the past indicates that they probably don’t feel remorse since they kept repeating the behavior. 

Related Reading: When Your Spouse Is A Serial Cheater- Dealing With Repeated Infidelity In Marriage

2. The serial cheater speaks negatively about all of their former partners

A serial cheater does not want to feel guilty about what they have done to their partners or take accountability for behavior. So, suppose they have cheated multiple times in the past. 

In that case, they will speak about all of their past partners being “crazy” or “doing them wrong” instead of seeing that they were to blame for the relationship’s failure because of their infidelity. 

3. The secrecy with the phone will become common

One of the telltale signs of a serial cheating husband or wife is that they will keep their phone out of sight, or perhaps face down, when around you.  

This is because they don’t want a phone call or text message to pop up from someone they’re seeing on the side. 

They may also spend a significant amount of time taking phone calls in private, or you may notice that they step out of the room when the phone rings. 

Related Reading: How Cell Phone Is Destroying Your Marriage And Relationships

4. They act as if nothing is ever their fault

Remember, serial cheaters cannot accept responsibility for their bad behavior, so they blame everyone else instead of taking accountability when they are wrong. 

They are constantly looking for fault in others, and when they are confronted with wrongdoing or caught cheating, they may attempt to blame the partner or change the topic of conversation to discuss something their partner has done wrong. 

Related Reading: How To Stop The Blame Game In Your Relationship

5. Manipulation is common

Serial cheaters need to get away with their behavior, so they have to manipulate their partners into believing they will change.  

This means they may promise to change and buy gifts to get their partners to stick around. Serial cheaters are also likely to have excuses or to make up stories to cover their tracks. 

They may even pretend to cry if you catch them in the act of cheating. This is all part of their manipulation.

Related Reading: How To Recognize And Handle Manipulation In Relationships

6. They show fear of commitment 

If your partner still has dating apps installed on their phone or is afraid to claim you as their significant other publicly, this demonstrates a fear of commitment, which is one of the signs of a serial cheater. 

Commitment is problematic for serial cheaters because they don’t want to settle down in a relationship and potentially miss out on opportunities to hook up with new people. 

Also Try: Fear Of Commitment Quiz 

7. They are fixated on their appearance 

Another red flag among the signs of a serial cheater is fixated upon their physical appearance.  

The serial cheater may spend hours in front of the mirror grooming themselves, and they will seek out compliments from others, whether it is strangers at the bar or social media friends who like and comment on seductive photos. 

This may be especially common for a woman serial cheater, who may thrive off of social media attention, frequently post sexy photos, and then cross into inappropriate territory with men who give her attention online. 

This isn’t to say that men don’t engage in the same behavior, but we associate this trait with women. 

8. Overly flirty behavior cannot be denied

If you notice that your partner is overly flirty, to the point that it is embarrassing or obnoxious, you likely have a serial cheater on your hands. 

The serial cheater will have no problem with buying a drink for someone else while the two of you are out together and will not hold back about telling someone how amazing they look in their outfit. 

If you call them out on the flirty behavior, they will attempt to play it off as being harmless.

Related Reading: Flirting For Fun Vs Flirting With Intent

9. They are incredibly selfish and self-absorbed

Research shows that people who have a high degree of narcissism are more likely to report that they would be likely to be unfaithful toward a partner. 

Remember that serial cheaters feel no remorse, and one of the reasons for this is that they are only concerned about their desires and impulses. This goes hand-in-hand with narcissism.

This video on therapy sessions with a narcissist will help you get through a person who exhibits narcissism around you:

10. Friends may hint that your partner is a serial cheater

Longtime friends likely know your significant other better than you do, especially if the relationship is relatively new.

Friends may spill the beans that their buddy is cheating, or you may notice that your partner doesn’t want you to be around their friends.  

This is because they are afraid friends may mention the cheating behavior to you.

11. You notice sideways glances from other people when you’re in public with your partner

It can be challenging for serial cheaters to keep up with their lies or their various romantic pursuits, so you may notice that when you’re in public as a couple, people look at the two of you strangely. 

Maybe it’s because they know your significant other is cheating, or they have recently seen your partner out with someone else. 

They may wonder why your serial cheater is out with you today when just last week, they were seeing someone else. 

Related Reading: 15 Most Common Causes Of Infidelity In Relationships

12. You get bad gut feelings 

If you’re someone with a high degree of anxiety, a gut feeling may not mean anything, but often, when people find themselves with a serial cheater, they get a gut feeling that something isn’t quite right.  

You are likely dealing with a serial cheater if you have a terrible feeling, combined with some of the other signs mentioned here. 

Related Reading: How Therapy Helps When You Are Married to a Serial Cheater

13. They have a habit of lying

Serial cheaters have to get comfortable with lying to cover up their infidelity, which means dishonesty can become a habit. 

If you frequently catch them lying, there is a chance they are also lying about being loyal to the relationship.

Related Reading: 10 Signs That Indicate That Your Partner Is a Pathological Liar

14. They are incredibly charismatic

Think about the beginning stages of your relationship with your significant other. Did they come across as incredibly charming? 

If so, this could be one of the signs of a serial cheater. These folks have to be incredibly charismatic to lure in new targets. 

Sometimes, they are so charming that they’re able to win over a new sexual partner, even if that person knows the serial cheater is in a relationship with someone else.

15. They have a long relationship history, but none of their relationships seem to last very long 

Serial cheaters tend to have a long list of past partners because they either get bored and end a relationship to seek out their subsequent love interest or get caught cheating and have to move on. 

Serial cheaters are also fearful of commitment so that they may be involved in a series of casual, short-term relationships. 

16. It seems as if they are constantly busy

Maintaining multiple relationships, even if some of them are casual, is hard work. 

On top of going to work and taking care of other responsibilities, the serial cheater has to find time to sneak away from the primary relationship or juggle their time between multiple partners, who may not know that others exist. 

This can lead the serial cheater to appear as if they never have time for you. 

They may even make excuses about working overtime, traveling out of town to see family, or being consumed with some personal crisis, when in reality, they are out entertaining someone else.

17. They are hot and cold

One moment they’re showering you with attention, and the next, they are ignoring your messages for hours on end. 

This means that the serial cheater is probably talking with someone else at times and returning to give you attention when it suits them. 

This can become incredibly frustrating for you because it seems like the relationship is perfect one minute, but you are being ignored the next minute. 

18. They accuse you of cheating

Deep down, serial cheaters know just how untrustworthy they are, so if they constantly accuse you of cheating, this is a pretty common sign of a serial cheater. 

They may think that everyone else is behaving exactly like they are. 

Related Reading: What to Do When You’re Being Accused of Cheating When Your Not

19. They talk about cheating as if it’s not wrong

This is one of the obvious signs of a serial cheater. If you catch them cheating, they are likely to tell you that it isn’t a big deal, or they may blame you, making you the one in the wrong instead of them.  

Someone who makes a one-time mistake with cheating will show remorse and admit to being wrong, but serial cheaters see no wrong in their behavior. 

20. They quickly grow bored

Also among the signs of a serial cheater is the tendency to get bored and seek new thrills. 

Suppose your partner is an adrenaline junky, always seeking out risky new experiences. 

In that case, they may also get bored with the relationship and feel no qualms about relieving their boredom by stepping outside the relationship. 

Not all thrill-seekers are serial cheaters, but the risk is certainly there. 

21. It seems as if they are never content 

Serial cheaters tend to struggle with commitment, and it’s because they always want the best of everything. 

They don’t want to settle down in a relationship and miss out on someone better, more prosperous, or more attractive. 

Along the same lines, a serial cheater is never satisfied with their car, job, or appearance. They are always looking for an upgrade, which unfortunately transitions over to the serial cheater’s relationships.

22. They’re incapable of being alone 

Deep down, serial cheaters are insecure about themselves, and they seek out multiple hookups to boost their self-esteem. This means they also struggle to function on their own. 

A serial cheater will jump from one relationship to the next because they need to be surrounded by other people to feel validated. 

23. There is an inability to change

People often wonder, “Do serial cheaters ever stop cheating?” The answer is that they often don’t unless they recognize their behavior as problematic and make a legitimate effort to stop cheating by seeking professional help. 

Serial cheating often has roots in narcissism or another personality disorder, so treatment is often necessary to change the behavior. 

Research has found that people who cheat in one relationship are three times more likely to cheat in the next relationship, suggesting that it is doubtful that a serial cheater will change.  

Related Reading: 10 Narcissist Cheating Signs & How to Confront Them

24. They demonstrate a noticeable lack of remorse 

Do serial cheaters feel remorse? The answer is no. If they did feel bad for their behavior, they would stop cheating because they wouldn’t be able to live with the constant guilt and shame surrounding their repeated infidelity. 

If your partner shows no remorse after being caught cheating or has no remorse when discussing cheating in past relationships, this is one of the main signs of a serial cheater. 

25. They come across as very organized 

Serial cheaters become skilled at making up stories to cover their disloyal behavior, so they can seem quite organized. 

If you question where they have been or where they are going, they will be able to develop a detailed story because they have spent time getting themselves organized to avoid being caught. 

How To Recognize a Serial Cheater

If you notice the 25 signs of a serial cheater, these are pretty good indicators that you are dealing with someone who cannot be trusted to be loyal. To sum it up, you can recognize a serial cheater through some of the following serial cheater signs:

  • They speak poorly of all of their past partners and may even admit to cheating on them, but they always blame their partner.
  • They come across as incredibly charming at the beginning of the relationship. Still, when you catch them in a lie, which you will, they blame you, act as if it’s not a big deal, or even engage in manipulative behavior like crying or making excuses. 
  • They are incredibly self-centered, flirty, and focused on their appearance.
  • You catch them on dating apps, or they hide their phone from you so that you cannot catch them engaging in disloyal behavior.
  • They talk about cheating in past relationships, or they talk about numerous past partners, none of whom ever worked out for them. 
  • They demonstrate a fear of commitment, either by refusing to acknowledge you as their partner in public or by continuing to chat with others via social media or dating apps.  

Traits of Serial Cheaters

There are several traits that characterize your typical serial cheater. One of the key, serial cheater traits is a high degree of narcissism, which is characterized by the following traits:

  • Self-centeredness
  • Vanity
  • Presenting as excessively self-important
  • Fixation on success, power, and beauty
  • Feeling superior to others
  • Requiring constant admiration 
  • Sense of entitlement
  • Manipulative behavior
  • Lack of concern for others
  • Arrogance

Beyond the traits above, remember that a serial cheater will often come across as very charismatic because they need to have the skills to lure in new love interests. 

Given their lack of remorse, they are also likely to present as unempathetic and, at times, rather cruel.  

At their best, the serial killer may even appear outgoing and adventurous, but this is often because of their desire to attract other people, even if they are in a committed relationship. 

Can a serial cheater learn to be loyal?

Given the patterns and personality traits involved in serial cheating, it is not often that a serial cheater becomes faithful. Serial cheaters engage in repeat cheating and feel no remorse, so they have no internal motivation to change. In addition, their manipulative ways and charming personality allow them to get away with serial cheating.

Change might be possible if a serial cheater takes accountability for their harmful behavior and demonstrates a desire to learn to be faithful. Still, it will be difficult and require professional intervention. 


Relationships with a serial cheater often lead to heartbreak, but you can learn to recognize the signs of a serial cheater to get out of the relationship and find someone who will meet your needs and be loyal to you.  

Hanging around waiting for a serial cheater to change isn’t likely to end well, so you will probably have to cut your losses and walk away once you notice the signs above.

What to Do with a Serial Cheater

A few years ago, a man came to my home with a document that he wanted to give me. It was entitled, "How to Seduce a Woman." He had spent most of his adult life cheating on his wife, and had recorded what he had learned in this manuscript. But after reading some of my articles on the suffering that cheating causes a betrayed spouse, he was convinced that what he had been doing was very wrong, and had decided to leave his life of cheating behind. He had confessed all of his affairs to his wife, had shown her what he had written, and was about to destroy it, but he thought that I might somehow find his experiences valuable in helping serial cheaters change their ways.

I never saw this man again, so I'm not sure if he was able to completely overcome serial cheating, but his report demonstrated to me that he, like most serial cheaters, went about his business of cheating with skill and careful planning. He learned from his successes and failures and became so proficient that he felt that he could seduce almost any woman, even my wife, Joyce, if he chose to do it. I didn't want to challenge him on that point.

A couple once came to me with a tragic, yet somewhat humorous story. The husband had been playing baseball and was hit by a ball that broke his jaw. As he lay in the hospital with his jaw wired shut, a woman came to visit him. It was someone with whom he had been having an affair. Unable to talk, he tried to explain with hand motions that it was not a good time for her to visit him. But then, a few minutes later, another woman appeared. She was also having an affair with him. It didn't take long for the two women to figure it out and as they were arguing with each other, his wife entered the room. Neither of the women knew that he was married. His wife learned for the first time that she was married to a serial cheater.

What is a Serial Cheater?

I define a serial cheater as a married person who willfully and deliberately has had more than one extramarital romantic relationship.

Most of the over 10,000 cases of infidelity that I have witnessed have not involved serial cheating because these unfaithful spouses were not trying to have an affair. A friendship with someone of the opposite sex unexpectedly turned into a romantic relationship and once it happened, they felt that it couldn't be stopped. But when it was over, most of them saw it as a terrible mistake. They certainly didn't want to repeat that ordeal, so they learned how to avoid affairs in the future by following the extraordinary precautions that I recommend.

But serial cheaters don't regard an affair as a mistake. For them, it's an achievement – something they can be proud of doing. So the difference between most of the cases of infidelity that I have witnessed and serial cheating is a matter of initial intent. Serial cheaters intend to cheat before the onset of a relationship, while most unfaithful spouses do not intend to have an affair until they have fallen in love.

While serial cheaters all intend to cheat, they vary greatly in their ability. The man who came to my house was an accomplished cheater. According to his claim, he could seduce just about any woman. But most serial cheaters are not that good at what they do. They try to hook up at bars, shopping centers, and even church with just enough success to keep them going. But to help these people avoid the embarrassment of multiple rejection, and even lawsuits, websites, like Ashley Madison, provide some help by bringing cheating spouses that are not very skilled together. These men and women find it to be an easy way to cheat without having to develop much talent.

The man who brought me his manuscript would never have signed up on a cheater's website. His goal was to seduce rather than simply to have an affair with a willing partner. For him, it was the challenge that gave him a great sense of accomplishment once the relationship was consummated. And then, he would move on to his next challenge. He would choose his affair targets one at a time.

For other serial cheaters, however, the challenge is to accumulate partners. Instead of moving on after an affair to a new partner, they add them to the list. One man I counseled had eleven partners at the time he was caught, none knowing about the others.

Is Everyone with a History of Multiple Affairs a Serial Cheater?

In the classic affair, a friendship begins innocently enough, with each person simply enjoying the other's company and conversation. As emotional needs are being met, innocently, the romantic love threshold is eventually breached, and the couple find themselves in love with each other. In some cases, emotional needs like conversation or recreational companionship are not being adequately met in marriage, so a spouse looks to others to meet that need. They don't think that they're at risk for having an affair: They simply want someone to talk to. In other cases, emotional needs are being adequately met in the marriage, but the spouse has allowed another person to meet that need, and they find that they enjoy having their needs met by two people.

Steven W. Harley, M.S. has over 25 years of marriage coaching experience and has personally worked with over 4,000 couples helping them overcome infidelity related issues. He can help you!

After the affair is over, however, and they remain married, there are some who don't learn from the mistakes they made when they had their first affair. They continue to have close friendships with those of the opposite sex, allowing these friends to make the massive Love Bank deposits that trigger the feeling of romantic love. Their first affair is thought to be an aberration, having nothing to do with friendships and the emotional needs that they fulfill. So they remain vulnerable for more affairs that they usually have.

Are these misguided people serial cheaters? Since I define a serial cheater as someone who intends to cheat before a relationship develops, by my definition, they are not. You may ask, what difference does it make? If affairs are with intent or through sheer stupidity, if they continue in marriage, they have the same effect: unimaginable suffering for the betrayed spouse.

While it's true that multiple affairs multiply the devastation, if a couple still want their marriage to survive, I've found that the prognosis depends on whether or not the affairs were intended.

Since intent to have an affair is often more difficult to prove than the affair itself, serial cheaters may try to claim that the affair was not intended. In some situations, intent is clear, such as with those whose affairs are aided by a website like Ashley Madison, or a dating website where they lie about being married. But in other cases, like affairs with friends of the opposite sex, it's not as clear that the friendship begins with intent to have an affair. Accomplished serial cheaters, like the one who gave me his report, almost always begin an affair as a friendship. So how can intent be proven or disproven in affairs with friends?

There are many physical and emotional disorders that are determined by a person's reaction to a cure. For example, if a doctor is uncertain as to what is causing a lung infection, he will prescribe an antibiotic medication that will attack what he thinks is the cause of the infection. If the infection is healed, it's evidence that he was correct in his diagnosis.

The same can be said of whether or not a person is a serial cheater. Since intent is the deciding factor, if an unfaithful spouse follows our plan to avoid the temptation of an affair, it's likely that their affairs were not intended and the prognosis for their marriage is very good. But if they resist any attempt to avoid temptation, it's likely that they are serial cheaters making the prognosis very bad.

How to Deal with Multiple Affairs

The program that I offer at Marriage Builders® to survive an affair is designed for those who value a monogamous marriage. When these people have an affair, they know that it was a mistake, and they want help to survive the affair and restore the marriage to a mutually passionate and caring relationship.

But when some of these people had their first affair, they did not know about the Marriage Builders® program. Their betrayed spouses were often given misguided information about forgiveness, trust, and unconditional love that failed to emphasize the necessity of conditions that would guard their unfaithful spouses' Love Bank from outside threats. As a result, they yielded to yet another temptation.

When these people see our program for the first time, they understand the mistakes they made in trying to recover from their past affairs. By following our program, in spite of their multiple affairs, they never have another affair again.

I recommend extraordinary precautions to eliminate the conditions that made their affairs possible. They are to have absolutely no contact with any of their affair partners, requiring a change of employment if they worked together and relocate if they lived nearby. I warn them to avoid friendships of the opposite sex because that's where most affairs begin. They are to create reciprocal transparency (a betrayed spouse is more likely to cheat after discovering their spouse's unfaithfulness), giving each other free access to social network accounts, smart phone messaging, and any other way they communicate with others. They are to avoid being apart overnight, and to blend their lives with their spouse's, completely eliminating, in particular, what I call the unfaithful spouse's secret second life, where they had previously lived beyond their spouse's radar. Finally, they are to create a marriage of passion and romance – meeting each other's emotional needs and avoiding Love Busters.

When I offer this program to serial cheaters, however, they usually don't follow it because they don't believe in monogamous marriage. Their secret second life is so valuable to them that they resist any effort to hold them accountable for what they do. They argue that it's demeaning or cruel to subject them to their spouse's scrutiny. They want to continue using the skills they had learned in seducing others. They regard flirting and other attempts at seduction as God-given rights or abilities. It's considered to be a valuable part of their essence and "who they are" which ultimately defines "who they are," indeed – serial cheaters.

That being said, even yet, some of the serial cheaters I've counseled have become faithful. When I find serial cheaters who can set aside their objections, willingly eliminate the conditions that made their affairs possible, and are willing to follow extraordinary precautions for the rest of their lives, they are changed men and women.

In the case of the man I counseled with eleven partners at once, he gave up his job working as a trainer in a fitness center. That was where he met most of the women who he seduced. After leaving that career for a new career where he met very few women, he was able to reduce his temptation considerably. With his life an open book for anyone to see, and following our program for surviving an affair, he never cheated again and his marriage was fully restored.

So whenever the spouse of someone with multiple affairs asks me what he or she can do to help save their marriage, I must tell them that the procedures we recommend will work for those who want to stop cheating. Our program will help them achieve that objective. But if they don't want to follow our program, I have to assume that they will continue to have affairs for the rest of their lives. And their spouses should assume the same thing. To avoid the suffering that comes with infidelity, I encourage them to divorce as soon as possible.

Steven W. Harley, M.S. has over 25 years of marriage coaching experience and has personally worked with over 4,000 couples helping them overcome infidelity related issues. He can help you!
90,000 serial scammers robbed banks

All. ru




November 8, 2010, 11:50

In the Sverdlovsk region, serial scammers were detained, on whose account 21 financial fraud. According to the website of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia, in the city of Sukhoi Log, in the southeastern part of the Sverdlovsk region, from 2005 to 2007, unknown persons through shops issued consumer loans for owners of lost or stolen passports. As a result, banks suffered serious losses. Unable to solve the problem with fraudsters on their own, the banks turned to the internal affairs bodies. A specially formed investigative-operational group of the Central Internal Affairs Directorate for the Sverdlovsk Region went to Sukhoi Log several times to clarify the circumstances of the crimes committed. Soon the detectives established a criminal scheme. Banks were damaged by unknown criminals who took out loans in stores to purchase expensive household appliances. The goods taken on credit were returned to the stores, and the criminals divided the money received from the cash register among themselves. Shops did not lose anything under this scheme, but the banks through which the loan was issued suffered. Apparently, store employees were involved in serial crimes. After checking the employment contracts of individual entrepreneurs and LLCs, the detectives identified a circle of suspected citizens who worked at the time when the frauds were committed. As a result of operational search activities, several suspects were identified and detained as suspects in the 21-episode fraud.

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Clad in granite

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serial deceiver Joseph Weil was involved in fraud for 70 years and was in prison 40 times Wale pretended to be the owner of a casino, the head of a bank, selling stray dogs and an elixir for tapeworms.

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Wale at age 84 Chicago Tribune

First scams: tapeworm elixir

Joseph Weil was born in 1875 to a family of German and French roots in Chicago. His parents owned a grocery store and, according to Joseph himself, were people of impeccable reputation. After school, he helped them, but often shied away from work and ran off to the races to place bets.

Whale immediately realized that hard work did not suit him. “I saw how my parents stubbornly fight for existence. Mom got up at five in the morning to open a store - I realized that such a life was not for me, ”Wail wrote in his autobiography. He wanted to be an actor or a journalist, but at the age of 17 he left school and became a collector.

The collector's salary was small, so his colleagues, as well as the cashiers and accountants of the firm, embezzled corporate money and falsified records to hide it. Wale made money by blackmailing them: he asked for payment for his silence.

On a trip in the late 1890s, Joseph met Doc Meriwether, who offered to sell an "elixir" for tapeworms and other parasites with him. In fact, the mixture was rainwater, flavoring, alcohol and cascara, a medicinal plant used as a laxative. Doc was willing to pay three times Whale's salary, and he agreed.

Meriwether in the squares and markets attracted the attention of the crowd to tell her about the tincture, which allegedly removes parasites from the body. Next to him was always the ringleader - Joseph. Pretending to be an ordinary passerby, he claimed that this potion had cured him.

In addition to the elixir, Doc Meriwether provided a "special" treatment for those who wanted to quickly get rid of tapeworms: in a rented hotel room, a client was given a potion with salt and left in a dark room. When she allegedly acted, he was shown a bucket with muddy water and a spiral-shaped potato peel at the bottom - a "worm". The victims paid $10 per procedure.

Weil worked with the doctor for a year and left to become a traveling salesman. He traveled around Chicago and other cities and towns in Illinois offering farmers and their wives subscriptions to a non-existent magazine. Together with them, he sold "silver" spoons and "gold" watches.

According to some reports, Wale was nicknamed the Yellow Guy because of his love for silk ties of this color, but the fraudster himself in his autobiography claimed that he never wore such things. According to some sources, he got it in 1903 while working with a swindler named Hogan: one of the journalists noticed that the two of them looked like the heroes of the then popular comic book Hogan and the Yellow Boy.

Yellow Kid Heritage Auctions Comic

In 1897 he married Anna Howard, the couple had a daughter. The wife knew what Joseph was doing and often said that he needed to become a "real businessman."

"Gift of Persuasion": how Wale sold alleged insider information at the races

In the early 1900s, Weil missed his wife, ended his job as a traveling salesman, and returned to Chicago. At first he wanted to become a preacher, but after studying religious books, he changed his mind. Joseph told his wife that he would open his own business, but in fact he was engaged in cheating at the races. Wealthy people who knew little about horses and their real capabilities became its victims.

The swindler started small talk and then asked for a loan or offered a deal. He claimed the games were fixed and had insider information about which horse would come first. For a small fee, he told the "result" of the races. Joseph himself did not bet, because even in his youth he realized that you would not earn money on this.

Racing in Chicago in the early 20th century Chicago Tribune

In order not to arouse suspicion, Whale bought horses - two thoroughbreds named Nicotine and Rebel. They were old and untrained and could not win the competition.

Joseph convinced people to give money for their training and assured his interlocutors that it was his horses that were the fastest. According to Wale's biographer William Brannon, the scammer was very well versed in human psychology - after talking with him, the victims signed papers without reading additional conditions.

When deceived people came to Wale, he showed them the agreement. It stated in fine print that the money could not be returned until the horse had won the race, which was almost impossible. Joseph's horses always came at the end. One such deal could bring him about $6,700.

In 1903, a swindler anonymously placed an ad in the Chicago Tribune that a gentleman could, on strictly confidential terms, report the results of the races a few minutes before the close of bets.

The newspaper was seen by a well-known Chicago horse racing enthusiast and theater owner named McAlister. He met with Wale - he told him that his relative works at the telegraph station, who will know the results before they are officially announced.

The swindler rented a space for a fake betting shop and hired actors. On the day of the race, the theater owner came to Joseph to give him the money, but did not have time - the "clients" started a fight at the box office, the time for accepting bets was over. Whale was furious, but decided to try to breed Macalister again.

This time he sold him a special machine for reading telegraph messages for $12,000. It was just a box full of wires and gears.

In the late 1900s, a fraudster swindled a certain Madame Cleo by selling her "insider" information for $2,500. She told her fan about it. He hired detectives, and they found Wale's other victims - he was sent to a Chicago prison for three months. The local racing association banned him from the racetracks for life.

People are attracted to everything cheap and free: why the swindler gave businessmen “land”

Weil claimed to be the inventor of the phone scam. In 1907, he opened an office that sold shares of the defunct Colorado Copper Queen mine over the telephone to residents of the city. Dozens of fake articles were published in support of how much money could be made from these mines.

Soon the company began to receive so many letters that they had to stop receiving them - according to the swindler, postmen could not carry such burdens. “Customers came in by the thousands,” Weil said.

In the 1910s, Joseph opened the Elysium Development Company, a real estate firm that offered free land in Michigan to clients and described in brochures that it would build a vacation paradise with golf clubs, tennis courts, and swimming pools.

Leaflets were not distributed en masse. Wale arranged dinners: he found out if people were rich enough, and showed them a brochure of an “exclusive private club”, whose lands he intended to donate because of great sympathy - you only need to pay for the work of a lawyer and a commission for the operation.

In fact, instead of land there was a swamp, but the victims could not complain about the swindler - there was no contract with him. In two months, he earned $8,000.

Humans are 99% animals. But 1% of human essence brings the most problems. If they understand that nothing can be obtained for free, all crimes will stop and we will live in harmony. But I highly doubt this.

Joseph Weil

Wale, in his opinion, was most often saved by human pride. Most of his traps came across people who wanted to make money dishonestly and would not go to the police under any circumstances. Others were simply afraid to appear foolish because they were so easily deceived.

Instead of paying for dinner, he left fake rings for restaurant owners. One of the restaurateurs told him - Detective Frederick Buckminster took up the case. He quickly tracked down the scammer and detained him after another scam. Joseph did not resist arrest, but around the corner he thrust a bundle of bills into his hands: “There is $ 8,000, I earned some change this morning. Would you like to work with me?" The detective agreed.

Together they earned tens of thousands of dollars on stray dogs: scammers picked them up, nursed them and passed them off as purebreds. Whale came to the tavern with a dog and asked the bartender for money to look after her while he was "at an important business meeting." Then Buckminster appeared and stated that he had been looking for this rare breed for many years and was giving $200 for an animal.

The bartender asked Buckminster to come back in a few hours. Wale came back and said that his work deal had fallen through, and now he was on the verge of bankruptcy. The bartender offered to buy the dog for $100 and thought he would sell it to Buckminster, who, of course, never came back.

You can't deceive an honest person: he arranged a fictitious bank and casino

Buckminster and Wale were involved in the sale of non-existent land and shares of fictitious companies. In 1917, during the First World War, it was difficult for German industrialists to do business with American businessmen, and scam partners posed as their intermediaries:

  • Sold $100,000 worth of shares in a defunct German steel company to an Indiana businessman.
  • Signed a fake contract for $50,000 with a local banker to build a factory with the participation of engineers from Germany.

The latter recognized the fraud and handed over the swindlers to the police - they served 18 months in the Joliet prison. In 1926, Wale was imprisoned again, but for six years: he was accused of robbing $ 75,000, although he himself claimed that he had never participated in robberies and other violent crimes.

Many of Whale and his partner's scams were carefully planned, writes Mitzi Sereto, author of The Best New True Crime Stories. They met with their victims, rubbed their trust and "prepared the ground." Joseph had many pseudonyms: Dr. Henri Ruel, John Bauer, Sir John Ruskin Wellington and Count Ivan Ovarnov.

Their favorite targets were bankers and businessmen, to whom they offered allegedly undervalued and profitable mines. For example, Buckminster told a businessman about the director of the National Trade Bank's Chicago branch who wants to sell his oil-rich land for $500,000—nearly four times the market price.

In fact, the scammers found out that the real bank was moving out of its office - the next day, a fake bank appeared in its place with director Joseph Weil. He hired dozens of actors and petty crooks who were ready to become clerks and security guards for a day.

The businessman was not from Chicago - he did not read the local newspapers and could not have known about the bank's move and therefore did not suspect anything. Whale wanted to exhaust the victim so that they would lose any vigilance. The important guest, despite his serious intentions, sat in line for an appointment with the bank director for an hour.

He watched the clerks and heard their conversations. Those specifically loudly said that the bank is doing better than ever. Wale accepted the client and told him about his intention to sell the land: supposedly this is not his profile and he does not want to be sprayed on oil production. The price was dropped by another $100,000, to $400,000.

The millionaire was happy with the outcome of the deal - he saved and evaded taxes because he paid in cash. With a $50,000 cost to fake the bank, Weil and Buckminster made $350,000 from the deal.

In the 1930s, Joseph rented casino space, hired actors, and posed as the owner of the establishment who wanted to sell it. He offered the amount clearly less than the market, the victims quickly signed the contract and transferred the money to Wale. The next day, in the place where yesterday life was in full swing, there was only an empty hall.

“Every swindler knows that you cannot deceive an honest person. If you expect to get something for nothing, then you will definitely get it in the neck, ”Wail said.

I needed adventure: retirement and honest business

Throughout his life, Wale led a luxurious lifestyle: he traveled around the US and Europe, stayed in the best hotels, bought diamonds and furs for his wife and mistresses. For decades, he was considered one of the best dressed men in Chicago: he wore tailored suits, silk shirts, patent leather shoes.

During his life, the swindler was in prison more than 40 times and, according to the police, earned more than $8 million by deceiving people. Joseph claimed that these figures are close to the truth. According to others, his biggest deal brought him $ 13 million.

Whale Trial in 1949 - left conman with glasses Chicago Tribune

Throughout his life, the swindler tried to invest money earned from scams in property and honest business:

  • Bought real estate in Chicago for more than $500,000.
  • Bought a yacht and spent $10,000 on expensive imported cars.
  • I invested in a circus with partners - together they lost $ 375 thousand.

After another arrest, Joseph, who was already over 70 years old, declared that he would only engage in legal activities, but still remained under constant police surveillance.

He bought several hotels, racehorses and wrote an autobiographical book. He invested in franchises and business development, but failed.

Weil argued that "if a fraudster invests in a legitimate business, he is bound to lose it." According to the swindler, many managers told him about the desire to hire him, but did not dare to do so because of his bad reputation. Therefore, Joseph had to take on any job.

In the 50s he raised funds for charity and political campaigns by phone, but already in the 60s he was seen on the streets of Chicago - dirty and in torn clothes, writes the Chicago Tribune. And he met his ninetieth birthday in 1965 in a nursing home.

In an interview, he claimed that he did not regret the scams and the money spent, because they were spent on life and travel. According to Weil, he was careful not to cheat people with the last money or honest workers. He deceived those who wanted to make money in a dishonest way and cash in on someone else's ignorance.

“Of course I wanted to make money. But on the other hand, I needed adventure.

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