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04th Sep 2016

Women in Dublin warned to avoid this con-artist

A well-dressed man approaches women claiming to have been robbed

Women in Dublin are being warned to avoid a con-artist who has tricked many women with a story of being robbed in a hostel.

Reddit user Gapmunky uploaded a warning to the Ireland subreddit explaining that a South-African man has been scamming women by insisting he has been robbed and needs to borrow money until his travel insurance kicks in.

The poster writes:

“I was walking home yesterday and around Christchurch a guy stopped me, looked like a normal well-dressed guy and not a scumbag or whatever so I listened to him.”

The poster describes the man as being caucasian, around 28-years-old, 5’9 and wearing a beanie. He’s a drummer from South Africa and uses the fake name Shaun Cash.

“He said that he was visiting Ireland with his girlfriend and their stuff was robbed from the hostel they were in and they were screwed and needed a place to stay until their travel insurance kicked in tomorrow.”

“He sold the story well, even offered his Macbook as a deposit for trust and I even thought of helping with my place to crash but since I was going to Longford this weekend I didn’t want to leave a stranger in my house with my housemates.”

The author of the post continues to say that they offered the man €60 as a similar thing had happened them once on a holiday. The man suggested he add him as a friend on Facebook so that they could meet up later to return the money. He offered the name ‘Shaun Cash’ and when the poster couldn’t find him through the Facebook mobile app, they insisted the man log in to Facebook on their laptop and make the connection.

“He did, and when he logged in, the Facebook name was different. This threw up red flags straight away for me and I was pretty sure it was all bullshit. I decided to go along, and accompany him back to the hostel to meet his girlfriend who was ‘starving’ and he insisted it wasn’t necessary.”

The poster writes that the man grew increasingly irritated.

“We got nearly all the way there when he said that he needed to get some food, and that subway was cheap. I told him centra was cheaper but he insisted and he said he just wanted to clear his head after all the stress and I said nope I’m coming with you,” writes the poster.

“So he freaked out and said do you want the money back or can I just have five minutes to clear my head, I said money back and he threw it in my face and ran off down the street.”

What happened next made the Reddit user realise that this man was a serial con-artist.

Going home, the poster opened their laptop to discover the man was still logged in to Facebook.

“He forgot to log out, since I didn’t give him a chance to. I had access to his whole account. I read his messages, and he has a bunch of messages from other people that helped him on the street, asking where he was, did he need more help, asking for their money back, saying they had his backpack/laptop he gave as a deposit.”

“Turns out he stays in hostels, robs people’s laptops and backpacks and then uses this story again and again to scam people’s good nature.”

Through further messages, the poster realized that the man is an addict. The messages on his account revealed he was proud of conning people and his exploits ranged from encounters with an older gay man to robbing houses.

The original poster updated the man’s Facebook to alert his friends and family to what he had been doing.

The Reddit thread is filled with hundreds of comments from people who claim to also have encountered the man. Recent comments suggest he focuses on Smithfield and Temple Bar. Many members of Dublin’s Girl Crew have also encountered the man. One commenter warned that he can become aggressive.