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Old 23.05.2011, 11:18
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Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

Hi there, last year I was telling a friend of mine my plans to to travel to Rome and Paris, and she told me about a a Lost Wedding Ring Scam she was confronted with in Rome. she was outside the railway station, and a man approached her holding up a Gold Wedding Band, he asked is it yours? she replied no, he asked her if she was married, and continued telling her it would be very lucky if she had it, he only asked if she could give him some money so he could buy food for his Family, she insisted that he hand it in to the Police, and he immediately took off with out a word.
I was in Paris last week, and I started talking to an American couple in a Cafe, they warned me about a Lost Wedding Ring Scam that was going on in Paris. A few days later I walking down the Street in St Germain with my friend, and a Woman stopped in front of me holding out a very shiny Gold Wedding Band, she asked is this yours?, I immediately blurted out with out thinking, Oh that Ring Scam is getting so Old, you need to get an new one. she got very Huffy and replied Scam Huh,and took off down the Street and ducked into a Cafe. We both burst out laughing with the way she was so annoyed with us and how obvious she was the way she pretended to pick up the ring. I am just curious to know if any one else has encountered this Scam?
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:22
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

I think you missed a part...

Where's the scam bit? Is she just distracting you so that someone else can yank your wallet, or is it really just tin painted nicely, and she'll want you to pay for it...?
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:23
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

Never of this one but a few in this page:


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Many of the most successful scams require a naive and trusting tourist. The sneakiest pickpockets look like well-dressed businesspeople, generally with something official-looking in their hand. Lately, many are posing as tourists with fanny packs, cameras, and even guidebooks. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public (especially touristy) places. If you're alert and aren't overly trusting, you should have no problem. Here are some clever ways European thieves bolster their cash flow.
Slow count: Cashiers who deal with lots of tourists thrive on the "slow count." Even in banks, they'll count your change back with odd pauses in hopes the rushed tourist will gather up the money early and say "Grazie." Also be careful when you pay with too large a bill. Waiters seem to be arithmetically challenged. If giving a large bill for a small payment, clearly state the value of the bill as you hand it over. Some cabbies or waiters will pretend to drop a large bill and pick up a hidden small one in order to shortchange a tourist. In Italy, the now-worthless 500-lire coin looks like a €2 coin — be alert when accepting change. Other coins (such as Turkey's one-lira coin, worth 55 cents; and Thailand's 10-baht con, worth 25 cents) also resemble a €2 coin.


Oops! You're jostled in a crowd as someone spills ketchup or fake pigeon poop on your shirt. The thief offers profuse apologies while dabbing it up — and pawing your pockets. There are variations: Someone drops something, you kindly pick it up, and you lose your wallet. Or, even worse, someone throws a baby into your arms as your pockets are picked. Assume beggars are pickpockets. Treat any commotion (a scuffle breaking out, a beggar in your face) as fake — designed to distract unknowing victims. If an elderly woman falls down an escalator, stand back and guard your valuables, then...carefully...move in to help.
More on this page:
http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/tips/298scam.htm
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:28
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

So .... someone gives you a gold ring for the price of a cup of tea and a bacon buttie - do they know how Cash4Gold.com works? - I think not.

Who's scamming who?
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:35
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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So .... someone gives you a gold ring for the price of a cup of tea and a bacon buttie - do they know how Cash4Gold.com works? - I think not.

Who's scamming who?
Well, I would imagine the ring would be either fake or hot (or both).
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:37
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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Oops! You're jostled in a crowd .....
I was near victim of a similar scam a couple of years ago here in Geneva..a guy just in front of me getting on the tram stopped and jostled me back abit and then indicated he was trying to pick up his dropped cig. packet while at the same time ( I realized moments later ) his colleague was lifting my wallet.


".........."
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:44
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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Well, I would imagine the ring would be either fake or hot (or both).
Probably .... or , as suggested, as a distraction.

However, without further details of it's application, I still find it a bit of a no-brainer.

They can't approach someone wearing a ring already - stupid;
so, they can only pick on someone with a naked finger .......

"....... oh yeah, I forgot I was married .... cor blimey, look, I've gone an' lost my bloomin' ring .... arf, wot a silly bunt".
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:49
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

We've seen this in process in Paris a couple of times (both times outside the louvre).
The first time the person picked up a 'gold' ring and told the American gentleman he'd dropped it. When he said that it wasn't theirs, the 'finder' then started to tell him that he'd give it to him for a good price as 'look it's real gold'.

The second time it was exactly the same scenario but the 2nd 'finder' said that it was obviously good luck and the tourist should take it. He was making physical contact with the gentleman as he was talking.

This is when either I or my husband interrupted to tell them it was a scam. The ring is usually a fake and not worth anything at all and/ or the 'finder' is getting close and making body contact whilst talking so to check they have their wallet.

The first 'finder' professed his innocence whilst backing away and hastily departing the area. The second literally took off at a run.

Not really the actions of honest men?
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Old 23.05.2011, 11:53
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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So .... someone gives you a gold ring for the price of a cup of tea and a bacon buttie - do they know how Cash4Gold.com works? - I think not.

Who's scamming who?
As I am new to traveling around Europe, and it is really good to get advice about these things. If I was ripped off or scammed I may be reluctant to go back, and that would be a shame. I thought this Forum was about sharing and helping each other.


I think if these people go to the trouble of stopping you and giving you a story about a ring ect, they want more than a price of buttie (what ever that is?)
I cant thank you enough for your positive input. I should have known better.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:08
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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As I am new to traveling around Europe, and it is really good to get advice about these things. If I was ripped off or scammed I may be reluctant to go back, and that would be a shame. I thought this Forum was about sharing and helping each other.


I think if these people go to the trouble of stopping you and giving you a story about a ring ect, they want more than a price of buttie (what ever that is?)
I cant thank you enough for your positive input. I should have known better.
I didn't intend for you to take offence, but as another poster wrote, it seemed that some part of this scam was missing, in your description, unless it was simply a distraction tactic whilst an accomplice attempted to "lift" something - i.e. a basic 2-handed pick-pocket scam, of which we all should be wary. I personally always suspect strangers approaching me for no reason.

[and a buttie is a sarnie -hth.]
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:10
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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I think you missed a part...

Where's the scam bit? Is she just distracting you so that someone else can yank your wallet, or is it really just tin painted nicely, and she'll want you to pay for it...?
They want money for it, the ring is worthless, they tried it on us near the entrance to the Louvre, it is such an old trick I just looked at the woman like "really?"...
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:12
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

Not come across the lost wedding ring one yet but have had someone come up beside me whilst using an ATM in broad daylight on a very busy high street in London saying that I'd dropped a fiver on the ground.

Without taking my eyes away from the machine to look at him or bend down for the "fiver" as he'd hoped, I politely told him to pick it up and keep it if that was the case. He did nothing and just stood there as that was clearly not the response he'd expected. At that point I became way less polite in my tone and language and he took off empty-handed.

Luckily I'd read about that scam just a few days beforehand. One person attempts to distract you just at the point where your money is coming out of the cash machine whilst their partner in crime whose standing nearby moves in, grabs the cash and they both do a runner with it whilst you're bending down to look for the money you supposedly dropped.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:15
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

I quit my job recently and decided to travel around Rome and Paris. After collecting 100 gold rings for just a few Euro, I sold them all and have now retired to my private island in the Carribean. You lot are too cynical.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:24
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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As I am new to traveling around Europe, and it is really good to get advice about these things. If I was ripped off or scammed I may be reluctant to go back, and that would be a shame. I thought this Forum was about sharing and helping each other.


I think if these people go to the trouble of stopping you and giving you a story about a ring ect, they want more than a price of buttie (what ever that is?)
I cant thank you enough for your positive input. I should have known better.
What's with the attitude that we are seeing so much of at the moment?
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:34
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

It's not much of a scam is it? I watched them doing it around the Eiffel Tower a couple of years ago whilst I was waiting for somebody. There were two separate teams working the patch. Not one person they approached was taken in. Most just laughed them away. I don't know why they bothered. Honestly, I think they'd have had more luck simply begging.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:39
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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It's not much of a scam is it? I watched them doing it around the Eiffel Tower a couple of years ago whilst I was waiting for somebody. There were two separate teams working the patch. Not one person they approached was taken in. Most just laughed them away. I don't know why they bothered. Honestly, I think they'd have had more luck simply begging.
Unless it's a way of identifying (or checking out) a "mark" as a later target for a bit of pick-pocketing.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:47
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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Unless it's a way of identifying (or checking out) a "mark" as a later target for a bit of pick-pocketing.
Valid point, though may be a little too sophisticated for the types usually involved in such "work".
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:48
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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a man approached her holding up a Gold Wedding Band, he asked is it yours?
Say yes. Snatch it out of his hand and walk off.

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saying that I'd dropped a fiver on the ground.
Say "thanks" keeping eyes on the ATM, put your foot onto the fiver, take your card and cash and then pick up the fiver and walk away £5 richer.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:56
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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...

Say "thanks" keeping eyes on the ATM, put your foot onto the fiver, take your card and cash and then pick up the fiver and walk away £5 richer.
Er, thanks but no thanks! There is no money on the ground in the first place. The point is to distract you from what you are doing.
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Old 23.05.2011, 12:56
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Re: Lost Wedding Ring Scam in Europe

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"....... oh yeah, I forgot I was married .... cor blimey, look, I've gone an' lost my bloomin' ring .... arf, wot a silly bunt".
It's 'bint' TiMow, not 'bunt' and if anyone falls for this scam.............they should have gone to specsavers!
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