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12 Unbelievable Stories of Scams and Schemes

Every generation seems to bring a new bag of tricks, inspired by the latest app, platform, or pandemic there is to exploit.

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Con artists have been scamming and scheming since ancient times. And yet every generation seems to bring a new bag of tricks, inspired by the latest app, platform, or pandemic there is to exploit. Take a careful step into our collection of great features about capers and frauds, and uncover some prudent advice on how to avoid becoming an unsuspecting sucker.

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When a Psychic Reading Costs You $740,000

Sylvia Varnham O’Regan
GQ

Inside the strange, predatory, and lucrative world of psychics who have successfully scammed customers out of their life savings, and the private investigator who’s trying to put a stop to it.

Secret Life of a Con Man

Dustin Grinnell
Narratively

The son of a bank robber and sibling of a psychopath explains how he found his own calling scamming a litany of unsuspecting suckers.

The Grand Schemes of the Petty Grifter

Guy Lawson
GQ

That old adage that you can be anything you want? Well, Jeremy Wilson has lived it for years, crisscrossing the country and inventing new identities. A war hero, an MIT grad, a Hollywood journalist, an IRA operative—Jeremy has claimed to be all those things and more. And oh, what a mess he’s made.