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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 73463
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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A Russian National friend was due to fly from Moscow to

Customer Question

Hello. A Russian National friend was due to fly from Moscow to London Heathrow on a visitor visa. She says Customs stopped her from boarding, as she needs to show that she has £2,400 GBP or equivalent, either in a bank statement in her name, or in cash? Is this true? I've also been provided with a supposed official document stating this by a Russian travel agency
JA: What steps has the friend taken? Has she filed any paperwork with the UK government? What country does the friend live in? If different, what is her citizenship?
Customer: She said she'd done everything necessary including UK visitor visa and was trying to board the plane. She's a Russian National, so lives in Russia and is a Russian citizen.
JA: Has the friend talked to a lawyer about the visitor visa?
Customer: No, just to the travel agency, who helped her arrange.
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: No
Submitted: 11 days ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 days ago.
Hello, I’m Ben. It’s my pleasure to assist you today. I may also ask for some preliminary information to help me determine the legal position.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 days ago.

Have you met your friend in person yet? Please note this is not always an instant service and I may not be able to reply immediately. However, rest assured that I am dealing with your question and will get back to you today. Thanks

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
No, spoken on the phone and e mails. Would you like me to send you the doc I referred to?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 days ago.
that may be useful, thank you
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Here's the doc...
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 days ago.
Thank you. The facts indicate that this is very likely to be a ‘romance scam’. The widespread use of online dating and socialising has offered numerous opportunities for fraudsters to take advantage of. As it is not possible to determine if someone is who they say they are unless you meet them in person, there will always be a degree of speculation involved. That is especially the case considering real peoples’ identities can be stolen and someone can pretend that they are a real and genuine person.That is why it is generally pointless trying to trace the person you are supposedly talking to as there could be someone completely different behind that identity. Instead, the best approach is to look at suspicious behaviour and requests made by that person and identifying certain 'red flags'. The following are the most common ones:
- You have met this person online, usually through a dating or social networking website, or instant messaging.
- They will usually be located in a different country to you – they could either be open and say they are from there, or they could claim that they are there on business
- They will start a long-distance relationship with you. They may take time to gain your trust, although often the friendship/relationship progresses unnaturally fast.
The most important red flag is that they eventually ask for money for various reasons. There are dozens of variations, with the most common ones being for travel expenses to meet you. This specific type of request is very common
- Once the money has been sent, the fraudster either stops all contact and runs away with your money, or they return and ask for more for different, often unexpected, reasonsIn summary, if you have met someone online, never met them in person and commence a relationship, only for them to start asking you for money, you basically know it is a scam. The key now is to not proceed any further with this. Cease all communications with them and certainly do not send money if asked to, no matter what they say.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 days ago.
Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
This is useful information Ben. Thank you. *****'m really keen and seeking to know whether that document is genuine and whether there is such a Russian customs law at Moscow Sheremetyevo airport, for Russian nationals visiting the UK on a UK tourist visa...
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 11 days ago.
No there is no such requirement and it is a common excuse used by scammers