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Here we go again.

This is Mister Josh Hoopes.  Those of you wondering why I hate this asshole, the long form answer is here.  Short form:  he is a con man and scam artist who preys on the hopeful and naive in the comic book world, destroying the hopes, dreams, and lives of those down here in the trenches while he laughs all the way to the bank.

Hoopes is probably the smoothest operator since Lucifer.  Many of us thought there was no way he could top getting Rob Granito to work with him to launch comics.  I had mixed emotions about that because it's still a scam and taking advantage of someone.  On the other hand...it's Rob Granito.

No such reservations this time, though.

Hoopes has broken surface again.  Hoopes is contacting artists he's already scammed to attempt to scam them again.  You might think, "Well, they know better right?"  Here's the wrinkle -- Hoopes is posing as Beth Smith.

Who is Beth Smith?

Hoopes' ex-wife.

hi, I hope you are well, the truth I am the ex-wife of Josh Hoopes. he is a very bad man and deserves to be in jail, this man and I have 4 children and they live with me, but Josh does not give the money to them, times are bad and I work for my children, so I know all of this man, I want to do a deal with you, I can make a xoom account with the name of josh and I sent the money from your account, I send you $ 900 xoom to your bank and then you send me my 400 dollars by western union, money is for my children, I can not do it directly but if I can use the method, you are left with 500, and sends me $ 400, . and then in two weeks I will send as much money from the other bank of this man, and you're left with some of the money and send me the money elsewhere, is the only way to have the money for my children.

The key to this scam is that PayPal will return funds, but Western Union doesn't.  Once the money is Western Union'ed, Hoopes just has to cancel the transaction on his end and no money goes from his pocket and there isn't a goddamn thing the guy who sent money can do.

This one really gets the Golden Toilet Chain With Crossed Legs award.  This came from a guy in South Africa who was scammed just a few months ago by Hoopes posing as a representative for Wizard Magazine (mentioned in the link above).  Hoopes already got $1,700 from him.  Once bitten, twice shy.  The guy contacted Rich Johnston at Bleeding Cool, the 5 star General of the troops, and asked him to check it out.  A little Computer Science III, and they proved it was Hoopes after all.

Spread the word.

We must look out for each other.

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