A gullible woman in the northwestern province of Kocaeli handed her jewelry to a con artist posing as Azrael the Angel of Death, Turkish media reported.
Answering her door, the 49-year-old veterinarian identified only as S.H. was taken aback when a man in long, black garb appeared on her doorstep. In a grim tone, the man claimed he was "Azrael" and had visited the woman "to take her life." He told the woman she had sinned and should be redeemed, adding that she should pay money for redemption. The suspect told the confounded woman to hand over money to a person who would walk in the apartment building five minutes later. The unsuspecting woman quickly took the only thing of monetary value at home - her set of jewelry worth TL 5,000 ($1,830). Soon she saw another man entering the building. The woman approached the newcomer and told him about Azrael. The suspect's accomplice pretended not to believe her and said he did not see anyone as the woman described. But the woman handed him the jewelry anyway. Both suspects fled the scene. The woman only realized she was scammed when she told her husband what had happened to her in the evening. The couple filed a complaint against the suspects who remain at large.
Despite repeated warnings by police, impressionable people, especially senior citizens, often fall for schemes by con artists. Last year, a man in the central city of Kayseri had handed TL 1,350 to a con artist who told him he was a prophet and pledged him "a spot in Heaven" in exchange of everything he had on him as he was walking on the street. Apart from money, the fake prophet took the man's cellphone and ring.