The world is littered with con artists who have accumulated wealth through misleading others. A con artist is generally a person who uses trickery to gain financially from others. The ease with which these characters tricked people and the wealth they accumulated made them stand out. Here are their exploits starting with the most famous in the recent history.
Frank Abagnale was born in 1948. His first dalliance with fraud started as a youth. He would purchase car parts then sell them back at a lower price using his father’s Mobil card. He was unaware that his father would end paying the bill. Abagnale was sent to juvenile correction facility after his mother discovered what he was up to.
Frank was to build a reputation as an imposter, check con artist and forger as depicted in the blockbuster film Catch Me If You Can. In his dubious career he went on to pass $2.5 million bad checks in 26 countries.
One of the most celebrated tricks that Frank employed while in New York was the printing of his account number on forged bank deposits slips. When a client of the bank deposited money, it would be channeled to Frank’s account. Frank was $40,000 richer when the banks discovered and nowhere to be found.
Abagnale was a master imposter. He was able to successfully masquerade and fly around the world as a Pan Am pilot for two years without being caught. Never mind he had never been trained as pilot! After his cover was about to be blown he changed tact. He became a doctor. Abagnale went on to practice for 11 months as a medical supervisor. Around that time he masqueraded as a teacher and lawyer.
His feat was to be cut short when he was arrested in France where he was to cool his heels for six months behind bars. He was extradited to Sweden where he was sentenced for another six months. The famous con artist was able to escape from prison on transit to United States. He achieved this by impersonating a Bureau of Prisons undercover officer. It did not take before he was arrested and sent back to prison to finish his sentence. The US Federal Government was to release him after serving five years with the understanding that he would assist the government fight fraudsters without payment.
Frank Abagnale is a multi-millionaire who has ventured into fraud consultancy at the Abagnale and Associates.