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“Online Romeo” charged with identity theft after conning women into buying him expensive cars

October 19, 2016  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
“Online Romeo” charged with identity theft after conning women into buying him expensive cars

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Authorities have charged a Missouri man, who convinced a woman to purchase him a Corvette and Lamborghini with identity theft as part of an online dating scheme that spanned across several states and included at least three women, authorities reported.

Timothy Rossell, 28, was apprehended on October 13th and has been charged with four counts of identity theft and one count of impersonating a federal officer. Police revealed that Rossell was involved in a con scheme in which he would persuade women to purchase cars for him, drive them for a bit, and then surreptitiously sell them while informing the women that the expensive cars were stolen.

The online Romeo was living with his 27-year-old fiancee in Missouri, under the identity of Austyn Gardner, a deputy U.S. marshal. While they were together, Rossell had her buy him a Shelby Mustang, a Cadillac Escalade, and a Can-Am Spyder. He also obtained several credit cards under her name and racked up tens of thousands of dollars in debt.

Detective Sergeant John Biser indicated that when Rossell’s future-wife discovered the credit cards, along with several federal identification cards for him under an alternate name, she confronted him, and he fled away in his 2015 Lamborghini Gallardo.

The Lamborghini had allegedly been purchased by a 27-year-old woman from Florida, who he had also dated, Yahoo News reported. She told authorities that she had also bought Rossell, who she believed was deputy U.S. marshal Austyn Labella, a 2016 Corvette Z06, and had also lent him $27,000.

Law enforcement officials eventually apprehended Rossell in Effingham, Illinois, where he was arrested at a bus stop trying to buy a ticket after his Lamborghini’s tire blew out.

The suspect reportedly met both victims, as well as a third woman from Pennsylvania, on Plenty of Fish, a popular dating website.

According to the Post-Dispatch, Rossell’s criminal history includes a myriad of offenses that span across several states under various identities. An article published by Pittsburgh-area news site Trib Live back in 2014 reported that the man had been charged with auto theft and impersonating both Missouri and Pennsylvania law enforcement personnel.

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