IT could never happen to me, people say. And unless you’re an avaricious knobhead so convinced of their superiority they believe they can double their money in six months, you’re right.
But if you are, a word of warning. Because I was one of those people and somehow, between my naked greed and my howling stupidity, I lost everything I had.
Who wouldn’t, I ask you, respond to an anonymous email promising incredible returns on capital? Who wouldn’t assume they were the only one savvy enough to spot this amazing opportunity?
Only the smart and prudent would miss out on the chance to own a whole floor of a luxury, fictional apartment block for just £5,000, then another £30,000 in six months, then an unexpected extra £68,000 later.
Being stupid alone wouldn’t do it. And the just plain greedy often have a measure of cunning that rules them out. No, deals like this are reserved for people like me who are that winning combination of both.
And when, a year down the line, I discover that a deal that was too good to be true was, in fact, neither good nor true? I won’t blame myself.
Instead I will appear in your local newspaper standing self-righteously in front of the empty patch of land the apartments were never going to be built on, officiously saying my bank should give me the money back.
Anyone would have done the same, I will claim. And if you’re as dumb as me, you’ll believe it.