Des Gregor, a sheep farmer from South Australia has just returned to Adelaide after being held captive in Mali for 12 days.
Following an internet romance, the 56 year old flew into the west African country last month to meet his supposed bride and also to collect the dowry of $100000 in gold that he had been promised.
Gregor was collected from the airport by a group of men who promised to drive him to his loved one’s apartment. On their arrival there he instead found two men, one with a pistol and the other with a machete. The men stripped him naked and took $675 in cash plus his credit cards.
After tieing his hands and legs, the scammers told Gregor that they wanted a ransom of $100000 to set him free and that they would start cutting limbs off if he did not cooperate or get the money.
Gregor was held in a single room apartment for the 12 days before being rescued by Australian Federal police who had duped the kidnappers into thinking that he had the funds available at the Canadian embassy in Bamako. Whilst ‘collecting’ the money Gregor was let out of sight for a short time and the police manage to free him.
Des Gregor now urges others to be wary of internet romances.
Personally, I wonder if he went for the romance or the dowry, but maybe that’s just because I’m cynical!