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Convicted identity thief Maria Christina Johnson, 43, of the Los Angeles area is accused of stealing big from men she met through online dating.

Scamaroo review: California scheming, anatomy of a sweetheart scam and bye, bye 401k

There's a whole lotta scamming a happening in dating land. So what's new?

This sweetheart scam/ID theft combo, for starters. Various reports, including this one from Frank Shyong of the Los Angeles Times, say Marina Christina Johnson, 43, is accused of luring men with her good looks and then stealing their personal information to open new lines of credit without their knowledge. Adds the LA Times story:

Johnson — also known as Maria Hendricks, Gia Hendricks, Maria Christina Gia and Maria Hainka — has been arrested and charged multiple times before for various forms of fraud, identity theft and burglary before, according to a statement from the sheriff's department.

After she successfully assumed an identity, investigators say, she moved into high-end hotels and charged thousands of dollars of goods and services to her victims, even attempting to purchase a car at one point, authorities said.

Johnson is accused with making off with more than $250,000 from her victims.

The Readers Digest shares a painful story from Doug Shadel and David Dudley of AARP the Magazine that outlines how a woman and her heart got taken to the tune of $300,000. This is an intriguing read with lots of insights on how a disaster like this can — and does — happen.

Unfortunately, there's more scamming afoot to share, including:

On the brighter side, here are some tips for safe online dating from Bela Gandhi of Fox32 in Chicago. For more dating safety tips to help you protect your wallet, heart and life, see the InspectaDate Dating Safety Tips Page.

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