Jose Luis Gonzalez / Reuters

From 2010 to 2017, Derek Alldred, a middle-aged man from California, conned over a dozen women out of a total of approximately $1 million. He learned a little bit about each of them, and became whoever they wanted him to be: a politically conservative veteran, a rich investment banker, a charismatic surgeon. In the April issue of The Atlantic, Rachel Monroe investigates how Derek managed to pull off these scams, and how his victims came together to get him convicted. Read the story. It’s fantastic.

Last week, I called Rachel. I asked her if there were any questions related to her story that, after months of reporting, she hadn’t yet fully answered. One detail stuck with her: Only 15 percent of all romance scams are ever reported to the police. We both wanted to know why. Today, our team answers this question, and others, in a series of pieces that complement Rachel’s story. Enjoy!

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