When a woman asks for help to carry her shopping, most men are likely to comply. If the woman asking for help happens to be young and beautiful, the chances of chivalrous people rushing to help her will be manifold.

It is this sense of chivalry that got many hapless males robbed by a young and beautiful Jordanian woman over a period of two years. Her modus operandi was quite simple but very effective. She would ask men passing by alone for help to carry her shopping bags; walking ahead she would lead the man to a lonely spot behind a building and then grab him. She would then threaten to accuse the man of attempting to molest her, or she would seduce him and then make off with his wallet and other valuables.

Most people, especially expatriates, finding themselves in such a situation would be afraid to report the incident to the police for fear of being accused of molestation, immorality or debauchery. They would probably chalk it up as a bitter experience and move on.

However, a handful of people, who do not belong to the ‘most people’ category, would gather the courage and march off to the nearest police station to register a complaint. When a sufficient number of such people begin filing complaints, the police will get a picture of the suspect and her usual location of operations.

Using the clues provided by victims, Criminal Investigation Department (CID) sleuths put the areas she was known to operate under surveillance. Sure enough, a few days later, the CID officers closed in on the woman as she was preparing to accost her new victim. The woman was subsequently identified in a police lineup by several victims. She told the police that she bought jewelry from the money she stole off the victims and the police were able to seize receipts for purchases of gold jewelry from her.

Moral: Next time someone asks for help with their bags, run the other way.

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