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'Her' name was Aleksandra and 'she' was young and pretty with a long, dark mane of hair and dark brown eyes.
She contacted Dave (not his real name) on dating site Zoosk in November last year, telling him she was a 32-year-old Russian woman eager to pursue a serious relationship.
Her emails from a Gmail account arrived every two days and at first were full of the little details of her life, like walking in the park with her friends and hanging out for pizza.
She sent dozens of pictures of her eating cake, dressed in a bathrobe, lying chastely on the bed, always dressed in white.
It was a mere two weeks before Aleksandra's emails swung in a more intimate direction, peppered with loving endearments and declarations of their future together.
Although she said she was 32 years old, the pictures she sent appeared to be of a much younger woman.
It was December when the first plea for help with her travel arrangements arrived in Dave's inbox.
When Dave told his friends about his new girlfriend, they laughed and said: "mate, you're getting scammed" but Dave kept emailing and Aleksandra always knew the right thing to say to assuage his doubts.
She sent him passport pictures, told him she had spoken about their future to her family and even started to call him "husband"."You are my loved man and I don't want to lose you," she reminded him constantly.
But Aleksandra repeated her requests that Dave transfer money to pay for her visa and half her airfare so she could travel to Australia and arrive at "the day when our dreams and desires become real".
On Valentines Day this year, Dave was woken up just before 7am by a call from a private number.