If you’re one of the 50 million people who’s already watched the Tinder Swindler documentary on Netflix, then you’re probably familiar with the name Simon Leviev.
Leviev was the 31-year-old who allegedly conned numerous dating app users for upwards of $10 million, frequently using the proceeds from one victim to convince the next that he was as wealthy as he claimed to be.
Actually, in the interest of accuracy, we should say that “Simon Leviev” was the name used by Simon Hayut, who adopted that moniker as part of his effort to convince his victims that he comes from old money.
And we probably don’t need to tell you that the pseudonym wasn’t chosen at random out of a phone book.
Like everything that Hayut did, his selection of a nom de con was carefully calculated and designed to convince any interested parties that he’s a product of fabulous wealth.
And now, it’s all catching up with him, as his victims continue to come forward with their tales of woe.
Simon has already suffered a criminal penalty for his crimes — two and a half years in a Finnish prison, followed by another five months locked up in Israel.
But now, it looks as though he’ll be back in court thanks to a civil suit filed by the actual Leviev family.
Simon claimed to be the son of Lev Leviev, a Russian diamond tycoon of Israeli descent.
Now Lev’s family — including daughter Chagit Leviev, the CEO of Leviev Group USA — have filed a lawsuit against Simon.
“For a long time, he [Simon] has been making false representations as being the son of Lev Leviev and receiving numerous benefits (including material ones), cunningly and using false words, claiming to be a member of the Leviev Family, and that his family will pay and bear the costs of his benefits,” the filing reads, according to a new report from the New York Post.
“He even used the LLD Diamonds trademark to make his victims believe that he was indeed part of the diamond company (it’s CEO no less, per his signature) and was a member of the Leviev Family.”
The suit goes on to allege that Simon “defrauded, cheated, conned, falsified, and hurt women, men and businesses.”
In other words, exactly what he was accused of doing in the documentary.
“The defendant used the dating application ‘Tinder’ to locate women who he then emotionally manipulated, cunningly bamboozled of funds, and eventually convinced to transfer large sums of money to him under the guise of being on the run from individuals intending on hurting him,” the suit continues.
“We started hearing word about Simon Leviev in 2017. There are nine siblings in my family, five brothers – and none of them are called Simon – and four girls,” CEO Chagit Leviev tells the Post.
“Soon I started hearing from diamond dealers that he’d made out checks of $350,000 in our name, but they were not our checks. Then another company called us and said we owed them $600,000 for private jets. They sent me a picture of his passport; it was Shimon Hayut.”
Chagit went on to say that her entire family was shocked by the Netflix doc — even though they believe it doesn’t tell the whole story.
“The biggest shock is when we saw the Netflix show and we saw the extent of his damage and his manipulation,” she said.
“The truth is, that show is just the tip of the iceberg. For him to live that life, he has to be conducting an international fraud of enormous proportions. There must be so many other victims.
“Even though we are a diamond company, we are victims too. We are getting threats because of this, endless prank calls saying, ‘My enemies are coming for me,’” she alleged.
“I believe the show didn’t do a good enough job of explaining that we have nothing to do with him.”
Responding to news that Leviev now has a talent agent and is hoping to launch a career in Hollywood, Chagit said the following:
“And now he has a Hollywood agent? He doesn’t belong in Hollywood. He is a criminal.”
Simon declined to comment on the Post‘s story, but it sounds like he’ll very soon be forced to justify his actions in front of a judge once again.