5 Devious Tales of People Tricking Each Other Through Seduction

5 Devious Tales of People Tricking Each Other Through Seduction

Tonight, you have the opportunity to take your beloved aside and deliver that message you’ve been saving up. You know what words we’re taking about. When the time is right, you’ll lean in close and say, “This has all been a charade.” 

You lured your target in as part of an elaborate plot, which all went according to plan. And now, you don’t say, “It started out fake, but I ended up falling for you for real!” No, this isn’t a rom-com. This is a rom-crime. Now is when you arrest them. Or murder them. Or maybe they murder you. These plans come in many forms. For example...

A Murder Victim’s Widow Infiltrated a Colombian Gang to Arrest the Drug Lord

Until a year ago, one neck of Colombia was under the control of a criminal named Rubén Darío Viloria Barrios. His nickname was “Juancho,” a word we really hoped meant something cool like “the Rumble,” but it turns out it’s just a name, like Jack. 

Rubén Darío Viloria Barrios

Córdoba Police

Once you see him, he doesn’t really look like he deserves a cool nickname.

Juancho’s international crimes included shipping 1.5 tons of cocaine to the U.S. every month by speedboat. Locally, his gang was known more for murder. On January 29, 2023, for example, two weeks before Juancho’s downfall, he was linked to the deaths of three men in a pool hall. A gang of six entered and shot up the place, and they left behind pamphlets explaining the massacre. They were just killing undesirables, explained the pamphlets. This included marijuana users, thieves and people who pick up newspapers. Regular people had nothing to fear. Just ensure your children are never out in public, warned the message, and they stood no risk of dying.

Interpol had a warrant out for Juancho, but local authorities said they didn’t have enough to act. Then Juancho’s girlfriend approached police. She laid in front of them evidence she’d collected, and in case that still wasn’t enough, she arranged to drop him off, scheduling a date between him and herself that turned out to be an ambush where police awaited him. Aside from the drugs and suspected murders, they hit him with charges for explosives manufacturing, and Juancho easily scored a 22-year prison sentence

Rubén Darío Viloria Barrios

Córdoba Police

Police faces are blurred to protect their identities, so you know Juancho’s gang is hardcore.

The informant was not some long-term romantic partner who’d grown tired of Juancho. She was the widow of a man he’d killed. Two months earlier, she’d approached him without revealing their connection, and she successfully seduced him to get close to the gang. The media aren’t releasing the names of her or her dead husband, for her protection. We can’t help but suspect that the remaining gang members know those names by now anyway, so we hope she fled the immediate area, possibly by speedboat.

One Kid Arranged His Own Murder by Catfishing a Friend

This following tale happened in 2004, back when people were a little more naïve when it came to being approached on the internet. The word catfish, as we currently know it, didn’t yet exist. So, when 16-year-old Mark (we’re not using his real name) in England met someone in an MSN chatroom claiming to be a 16-year-old girl, he believed it. Mark and “Kate” had romantic sessions online, which consisted of Mark doing stuff on a webcam while the girl stayed unseen. The girl introduced Mark to her 14-year-old stepbrother John (again, we’re using a fake name here), whom Mark met in real life. 

Then came a twist. Someone murdered Kate. At least, that’s what the next person who approached Mark in the chatroom told him. Apparently, John had a stalker, and this stalker had turned his fury on the boy’s stepsister. Then this new person chatting with Mark? Believe it or not, this person was also murdered. Mark, who did believe it, next found himself chatting with “Janet,” who described herself as a 42-year-old secret agent. Janet was interested in Mark, both professionally and sexually. 

woman silhouette

Giorgio Trovato/Unsplash

“Catfish” wasn’t a word in 2004, but “MILF” was. 

Janet soon had an assignment for Mark: to kill John, with a knife. John was dying of a brain tumor anyway, she said, so he’d really be doing the kid a favor. This assassination would be Mark’s entrance test into the British intelligence services. If he succeeded, he’d get a gun — not in order to carry out the murder, just as a reward. Plus, he’d get to meet Prime Minister Tony Blair. Most interesting of all, he’d get to sleep with Janet. The plan was to walk with John into an alley and stab him. If MI5 called off the plan, they’d broadcast an abort code via megaphone: 6969.

Sadly, there was to be no 6969. Mark went through with it, stabbing John. The good news is, Mark wasn’t especially good at stabbing, and John survived. It then fell on police to look through thousands of lines of chat logs to figure out who had ordered Mark to do this. They saw his chats with Kate, Janet and several other sketchy figures and easily figured out the accounts were operated by the same person (among other clues, they all typed the word “maybe” as “mybye”).The true mastermind behind all the personas? John himself, who had put all this together as an elaborate suicide plan.

boy at computer

Compare Fibre

What are you doing, stepbro?

Don’t be impressed by John’s skill at impersonating various fictional figures. The plan’s success relied more on Mark’s gullibility than John’s character work. Here, for instance, is the conversation where he first brought up the murder idea:

Janet: could you stab someone?
Mark: i haven't really thought about it
Janet: well think please
Mark: ok erm well i watch a lot of films

Here’s a later extract. “Alti” refers to the town of Altrincham.

Mark: he will die in the middle of alti??
Janet: please!
Mark: but thats wot will happen
Janet: i wouldnt ask if it wasnt important?
Mark: I understand that
Janet: trafford centre or Manchester
Mark: u want me 2 take him 2 trafford centre and kill him in the middle of the trafford centre?? thats wot ur asking?
Janet: yes

boy at computer

Thomas Park/Unsplash

Social media would later make kids more literate.

It was tricky to figure out what to charge the boys with, a task complicated further by both being minors. Mark pleased guilty to attempted murder, while John pleaded to “perverting the course of justice and incitement to murder.” As punishments, both just got supervision orders and were forbidden to resume contact. John was further forbidden from using the internet without adult supervision and was forbidden from using chartrooms, period. Some would say all 14-year-olds should receive the same restriction, for the sake of the rest of us.

The Teen Nazi Killers

Up next, we have another story of seduction instigated by a 14-year-old. That’s surely not a sentence you were hoping to read today, but don’t worry, it’s better than it sounds. The girl in question is Freddie Oversteegen, and when she was 14, she made it a habit to go to bars to talk to men in uniform. “Do you want to go for a stroll?” the little girl with braids would say, and the man would gladly walk with her into the woods.

Freddie Oversteegen

National Hannie Schaft Foundation

Just like in the fairy tale, the one with the wolf.

This doesn’t sound like a rendezvous that would end very well for Freddie. But then, once they were some distance into those woods, she’d take out her handgun and murder the guy. That’s because this was 1940 in the Netherlands, and the uniformed man was an occupying Nazi. Feddie was a member of the Dutch resistance. 

She was a part of a trio, along with her sister Truss and a third girl, Hannie Schaft. The resistance had recruited them after seeing them passing out anti-Nazi literature, and their resistance duties covered a variety of jobs. Sometimes, they put on disguises, infiltrated concentration camps, and smuggled Jews out. Sometimes, they blew up bridges and rail lines with dynamite. And sometimes, they’d seduce Nazis and then shoot the men in the face. 

Pistol of Hannie Schaft

Thayts/Wiki Commons

This is why it’s recommended to stick to public areas for your first date.

Sometimes, the girls would be tasked with other assassinations, separate from these bar seductions. The challenge here was approaching the target and getting away without being caught. With Freddie, the solution was usually to do a drive-by. Meaning, to drive by and shoot him from a bicycle — because she was too young to drive a car. 

The Attempt to Turn Ralph Nader

Speaking about driving, let’s talk a bit about the ultimate enemy of the auto industry: Ralph Nader. In the 1960s, he wrote Unsafe at Any Speed, about various dangers of cars as well as the automotive industry’s history of resisting safety improvements. “For over half a century,” reads the book’s opening, “the automobile has brought death, injury and the most inestimable sorrow and deprivation to millions of people.” Most people who own cars and benefit from them would question that assessment. Disagreeing especially hard was auto manufacturer General Motors. 

Unsafe at Any Speed: The Designed-In Dangers of the American Automobile

Grossman Publishers

One hundred percent of people alive right now would say cars didn’t kill them. 

General Motors sent detectives to spy on Nader. We know for sure that detectives followed him around and went beyond what detectives are supposed to do. Nader won a lawsuit against them over this, and GM’s chairman testified before Congress, delivering an apology to Nader. As for some specifics of what they did, they allegedly decided the best way to discredit him was to hire a sex worker to seduce him — at the supermarket. 

The woman went up to him while he was at the cookie counter. Nader turned her down. He smelled a rat. That's not our way of questioning her hygiene but rather means he found her advances suspiciously forward and suspected she was a professional, hired by people trying to blackmail him. At this point, it made sense for General Motors to reassess their strategy. Allegedly, they now concluded Nader was gay, which meant their biggest mistake up to this point was choosing the wrong flavor of temptress. 

Safeway chocolate chip cookies

BrokenSphere/Wiki Commons

Also, maybe Nader had been occupied with something far more tempting.

The next operative was a man. He followed Nader right into a Senate office building. If Nader engaged in some gay sex in a Senate hearing room, that might indeed cause a scandal, as last year’s sex tape incident revealed. This operative instead lost track of Nader and made the questionable decision to ask a police guard there for directions. “What are you doing, following people here into the Congress?” replied the officer. “What's your name?” And that’s how the campaign against Nader unraveled. 

The backlash against General Motors went on to make the book more popular. Unsafe at Any Speed even led the government to form the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Cars today are now roughly five times less likely to kill you than cars were in the 1960s. That’s not primarily a result of this book, but the book did play a role, so hooray for books. 

A Serial Killer Seduced the Prosecutor and Escaped

Sergey Maduev killed at least 10 people in Russia in the 1980s and 1990s. He received the nickname “Chervonets,” which we’re pleased to learn is not a generic first name like Juancho but is a Russian word for gold coins. Brigands like him were also called volchara, or wolves. Maduev himself preferred a different nickname: “thief-outside-the-law.” We suppose that name sounds kind of cool if you don’t think about it, but all criminals work outside the law. That’s how the law works. 

Sergey Maduev

Ivan Kurtov/TASS

You’re only inside the law once you’re behind bars.

The reason Maduev described himself as a thief rather than, say, a connoisseur of pain, was that he didn’t murder people simply because he liked murder. He was primarily a robber, and he killed people while in the process of robbing them. He just valued people’s lives rather less than most robbers do. For example, there was the time he shot three robbery victims because they were making too much noise. Or there was the time he set fire to a home and burned a baby to death, because he felt it all seemed cleaner that way. 

In 1990, police apprehended Maduev, despite his attempts to threaten them with a dummy grenade. They placed him on a convoy as part of a transfer to Moscow. Before it could take him there, he got away by shooting the escorting officer in the stomach. He used the very same gun he’d used in his last robbery. The police, though, had taken that pistol off his hands when they’d arrested him. How had he gotten it back?

The answer was this woman:

Nataliya Vorontsova,

Irakly Chokhonelidze/TASS

Bet her name’s Natasha. Or something that sounds like Natasha. 

That was Nataliya Vorontsova, a member of the prosecution team. Security footage showed her interrogating Chervonets, with Maduev gaining the upper hand in the conversation and the two soon passionately kissing. “He could see the woman in me,” she’d later say. Or, as Maduev later put it, “As a woman, she was available.” Vorontsova had taken the gun out of the evidence locker and smuggled it to Maduev in his cell. She received a seven-year prison sentence for her part in his escape. 

Police caught up with Maduev later on. Later still, he managed again to escape. Once more, someone smuggled a gun to him — this time, the accomplice was a female guard he’d befriended. Maduev had “hypnotized” her, she later said. And against hypnotism, there is no defense. 

Follow Ryan Menezes on Twitter for more stuff no one should see.

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