Scam artist isn't just another pretty face

Scam artist isn't just another pretty face

Credit: Bank camera photo

A so-called Barbie, who's ripped off men in Virginia Beach.

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WVEC.com

Posted on August 19, 2002 at 5:49 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 30 at 3:37 PM

Peter DiDomenico admits he has a soft spot for pretty women. But he's taken it hard because it's cost him nearly $5,000.

He said a pretty blond girl calling herself "Kelly" befriended him a few weeks ago at Lynnhaven Mall in Virginia Beach. "She was like, you're kind of cute, give me your phone number, maybe we could do something sometime," DiDomenico recalled.

Another man described her as a 5' 8" blond wearing Jennifer Lopez-style sunglasses.

The Secret Service calls them "Barbies," scam artists who use their good looks to rip off unsuspecting men. They're on the prowl at the oceanfront and local malls.

In DiDomenico's case, "Kelly" told him she was planning on starting a business but didn't have a local bank account. She'd get her father to wire money into Peter's credit union. Then, he could give her the cash.

When Peter checked his balance a few days later, there was indeed a $4,700 deposit. So, Peter and Kelly met at a gas station near Pembroke Mall and handed over the cash.

He hasn''t seen her or his money since.

"Her phone was disconnected, her cell phone, too, and that was it," DiDomenico said.

It turns out "Kelly" had deposited a counterfeit check.

Federal agents told 13News she and another girl have been cashing bogus checks around Hampton Roads. Authorities have their pictures, taken from bank surveillance cameras. But who they are or where they're staying, isn't known.

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