A CONMAN who fleeced his girlfriend out of almost £30,000 after meeting her through a dating website has been jailed for two years.
A court Gudfinnur Oskarsson conned the victim after moving from his native Icleand to the UK to live with her at her home in Leeds.
Leeds Crown Court heard Oskarsson, 33, met the victim, Victoria Maker, through a dating website in August 2013.
Oskarsson quickly moved in with Miss Maker after telling her he was temporarily stuck in the UK as there were problems with him receiving payments for work he had done.
Robert Stevenson, prosecuting, said Miss Maker initially agreed to pay for everything until he was paid.
He said: “The defendant made various references to awaiting money being owed to him which he had not received.
“She accepted the account given by him and said he was required to work abroad on occasions and she funded his flights throughout a six month period.”
During their relationship she sold her home for £190,000 and they moved into rented accommodation in Shaftesbury Avenue, Roundhay.
On August last year Oskarsson persuaded Miss Maker to transfer £153,000 into his personal bank account after telling her he would put it into a Norwegian savings account, claiming she would receive a higher rate of interest.
After transferring the money Oskarsson then “fobbed” Miss Maker off whenever she asked to see bank statements.
Oskarsson then told her her he had found work and would pay the monthly rent on their home of £650 per month.
Mr Stevenson said: “In fact it was coming out of the money that he had got from her.”
Matters came to a head in March this year when Miss Maker challenged him about the money. He returned £25,000 to her before saying he had been offered more work in Iceland for a four-week period.
Miss Maker did some investigations while he was away and found bank statements that showed the cash she had transferred to him had never left his own account.
She contacted police after Oskarsson failed to answer her text or e-mails to him.
He was arrested at Heathrow airport as he was about to board a flight to Washington, in the USA. Oskarsson pleaded guilty to theft.
A large amount of cash was eventually recovered but there was a deficit of £29,504.
Andrew Foley, mitigating, said Oskarsson had been “madly in love” with Miss Maker.
He said: “He was frustrated that she was maintaining him. That seems to be the justification to use her funds to pretend he was a man of substance who could support her.”
Judge James Spencer, QC, said: “You took advantage of her attraction to you in order to take her money.
“The sum that was taken in the first place was very substantial indeed.
He added: “You decided that all you were interested in was her money and that resulted in a loss of almost £30,000.”