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However, he never arrived, claiming he had been prevented from leaving Nigeria because of an unpaid tax bill.
I completely trusted him.'Mrs Fowkes only realised something was wrong when police turned up on her doorstep in November 2010.
" But to my mind, I had developed a trust with this person.'Mrs Fowkes, who has two grown-up sons, first began writing to Hawkins in April 2010 after joining a dating website.
He told her that while he was living in Britain, he was currently doing engineering work in Nigeria.
'I completely believed he was coming back and he was going to pay me back,' Mrs Fowkes said. Everything I asked – like why the embassy couldn't help – he always had an answer for.'I believed I had started a relationship but looking back I was obviously being groomed.
When I told my two sons they were devastated and blamed themselves for not questioning what I was doing.
Judith Lathlean, a 67-year-old, Oxford-educated professor, made headlines in December last year when she courageously revealed how she had paid £140,000 to a man she met on a dating site (but never met face to face).