The Tinder Swindler – A Short Review

The Netflix documentary called The Tinder Swindler follows the story of a man named Simon Leviev, who duped several women across Europe through the dating app and still walking free of any charges.

We know it’s Valentine’s Day, and it’s only the perfect day to speak about how situations that are meant to set you up into longtime love, can also set you up with problems for life. Vulnerability can turn into the worst punishment, and no one deserves to be treated so wrong or pushed into the corner.

The Tinder Swindler was released on February 2, 2022, and is directed by Felicity Morris. It is based on a true story of a conman from Israel called Shimon Hayut. From what the documentary can tell us, he has been posing as the son of a diamond mogul from Israel called Lev Leviev.

Simon would get in touch with women through Tinder, start expressing that he’d developed feelings of love for them, and treat them with trips in private jets, along with expensive dinners at the best of hotels. After emotionally trapping these women, he would begin to ask them for money in huge amounts to save his life, or in the excuse of business.

Three women who were close to him as seen in the documentary were Cecilie Fjellhøy, Pernilla Sjöholm, and Ayleen Charlotte. The story that followed the three of these women was the same – Simon would find them on Tinder, behave like the best partner in the world, take them around on his private jet to different countries, and finally continue his con mission through WhatsApp.

He’d emotionally coax them into helping him, telling them he is in big trouble and being a diamond merchant could be “risky business“. He’d then use the money that he would get from them in the form of credit cards, loans, even in cash, and spend it on partying with other women in different parts of Europe.

When Cecilie and Pernilla got a hint of something strange, it was good that they also recognized they were both being fooled. The two revealed whatever evidence they could gather to one of Europe’s biggest news agencies VG. An investigation was carried out by their team of journalists to find out who Simon Leviev really was.

On visiting his home in Israel, it seemed like Simon hadn’t visited in years, and his mother does not remember seeing him since he was 18. Pernilla works undercover to help with the investigation and see if she can find any useful information. A third woman, Eileen, surfaces, and is able to trace what identity he was using at the time to travel internationally.

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The worst part about The Tinder Swindler is, there could be no charges made against Simon directly, because he set up what you could call a ‘perfect scam’. There were no details to trace that Shimon Hayut was the man responsible for all these heinous crimes across Europe. The maximum jail he faced, which was supposed to be 11 months for identity theft, was brought down to 5 months.

Right now, Simon is roaming free, and his back to using his Instagram and Tinder accounts. All three women are still engaged with paying back the loans they took for him. Unfortunately, no proper justice has been served, despite putting out notices in nine different countries across the continent.

There are even people on the internet praising Shimon for his skill, and shaming the women who were emotionally conned. Being in a situation like this is the only way a person would truly understand that some con men are just too good at what they do, and it’s not about the naivety or how gullible a person is!



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Feature image is a still from the Netflix documentary ‘The Tinder Swindler’.

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