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Monday, Apr 12, 2021

Catfish called 'danger to women' after scamming victims of thousands

Catfish called 'danger to women' after scamming victims of thousands

A ‘sinister’ serial catfish has been jailed for a third time, after using dating apps to con women out of their money for more than a decade.

Amir Tofangsazan, 33, used photos of a male model for his social media profiles and said he was a trauma surgeon or a barrister.

Over 13 years he tricked many women into lending him money that he never paid back.

The ‘perverted’ fraudster even tricked one of his victims into having sex with him by convincing her that he was a friend of her boyfriend and was helping him fulfil his sexual fantasy of watching other men have sex with her.

In 2015 he was jailed for seven years and nine months. While he was serving that time he was transferred to an open prison in 2018 where he returned to his cruel ways and tricked women out of £5,300.

He was convicted again and had three years added onto his sentence along with a criminal behaviour order (CBO), which restricted how he was allowed to use his phone and laptop and banned him from using dating apps completely.

The 33-year-old was described as ‘perverted’ and ‘a danger to women’

He served less than half of the additional three years and was released on November 4, 2019, when he waited just a week to start targeting women again.

He contacted three of his previous victims on Tinder and WhatsApp but was found out when one of the women recognised someone she knew in one of his stolen photos.

Tofangsazan, from Barnet, North London, had been using a phone that was registered with the police to set up the same fake identities and use Tinder and Bumble, despite being banned from doing so.

He was charged with six counts of breaching his CBO by using the banned dating sites, owning second and third mobile phones, having a laptop the police did not know about and staying somewhere different to his registered address.

He was recently convicted of breaching his criminal behaviour order

Although he initially denied the charges, he pleaded guilty at Wood Green Court in November.

Yesterday the same court jailed him for another three years and called him a ‘danger to women’ after being convicted of 43 offences in 13 years.

Judge John Dodd QC told him: ‘You stole the identity of essentially two men in order to worm your way into the affection and lives of women you met through internet dating sites. I understand that practice is referred to as “catfishing”.

‘You behaved in an utterly disgracefully, and in some respects perverted manner to at least some of those women, and that criminality is reflected in that you received a substantial term of imprisonment.

‘Astonishingly, while still serving a sentence, and having been transferred at the end of that sentence to an open prison, you resumed that behaviour.

Wood Green Court sentenced Tofangsazan to another three years in jail

‘You started again to lie and deceive women, having set up false profile son internet dating sites.

‘You chose two particular profiles representing yourself as either a barrister or trauma surgeon. You stole the identities of two such individuals and used their photos to lure those women into your web of deceit.

‘As I understand it, you were seeking to re-establish contact with three of your victims.

‘I believe it is right to say that your motivation was to continue to target women whose you perceive to be vulnerable.

‘Its particularly sinister, in my view, knowing that they had previously fallen for your deception and you were now using a new false persona to target them once again. As if they hadn’t suffered enough already.

‘Although it’s right to say there are no substantive counts of fraud, your behaviour following your last release from prison demonstrates why the CBO is so important in your case.’

An extract from a psychiatrist’s report on Tofangsazan was read in court.

It said he appeared to ‘hold a sense of ambivalence towards women on one hand desiring closeness but on the other hand feeling probable hostility towards them’.

Judge Dodd said that was ‘an alarming paragraph to read’. He added: ‘Your history reveals utterly abhorrent behaviour striking the souls of your victims. You clearly have not yet learned any lessons of significance.‘


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