Who Is The Conman That Netflix Docu 'Tinder Swindler' Is Based On?
Tinder Swindler is a documentary on Netflix that maps the journey of a conman who swindled millions from women on dating apps.
Crime thriller 'Tinder Swindler' is releasing on Netflix on February 2 and is sure to give jitters to those using dating apps. The documentary is about a 'billionaire playboy' who cajoled several women into romantic relationships and then swindled millions of dollars from them.
The documentary is based on the life and scam of Russian-Israeli citizen Shimon Hayut. He used the name Simon Leviev, pretended to be a billionaire and defrauded many women globally. He was eventually convicted after his arrest in June 2019. The documentary has spoken to some of Hayut's victims and is based on the investigation by Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang.
According to reports, Hayut served a two-year sentence back in 2015 after he was found guilty of conning three women. In 2011, he was charged with forgery, fraud, and theft.
For his Tinder swindling scam, Hayut was given a 15-month prison sentence by Tel Aviv Magistrate's Court in 2019. However, he walked out of the prison within five months during Covid-19 outbreak, as the authorities wanted to de-clutter the jails, according to reports.
The Netflix thriller is produced by Felicity Morris who has documentaries like 'Don't F**k With Cats: Hunting an Internet Killer' to his credit.
Swindler's Modus Operandi
Hayut was into fraud and conning earlier as well. In 2017, he went to Israel to avert charges and legal action for his scams. It was then that he started finding women on dating apps to defraud them of huge sums of money while pretending to be the son of a billionaire. Hayut called himself 'the prince of diamonds', the son of a Russian diamond biggie Lev Leviev. With the swindled money, the 31-year-old youth funded his lavish lifestyle.
Cecilie Fjellhoy, Pernilla Sjoholm and Ayleen Charlotte will now be narrating their ordeal of 'dating' a conman who defrauded them of money. From expensive gifts to luxurious hotel stays, Hayut managed to maintain his image to trap the women. As per his modus operandi, all this was followed by requests for a loan on pretext of a life-threatening situation. This facade of innocent need for money would then translate into threats and coercion where the victims ended up paying thousands of dollars to him.
Cecile Fjelhoy, who is among the three women who have banded together in the Netflix documentary, was the one to put an end to Hayut's frauds. She found his other victims and exposed him. "Cecilie discovers his other targets and once they band together, they're victims no more: The Tinder Swindler meets his match," a teaser of the documentary says. She had even taken loans from different banks to save Hayut from the situation. Most of his victims found themselves in similar situations after trying to help out the conman out of a situation presented to them.
Hayut's Tryst With Crime
After the police was tipped off, his arrest warrants were issued in Israel, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, Norway and England. He was finally nabbed by the Greek Police in 2019 and was extradited to Israel. After spending five months in jail, he was released owing to Covid-19. The conman is at large since then, according to reports.