Name
Beauty Pageant Scams

Aka
Beauty and The Cheat

Victims
Young beautiful woman and girls (and their parents)

The Crew
Pageant officials, judges and organisers.

The Scam
Encyclopedia reader Paul Murry sent me this email after having read the entry on modeling and acting agencies.

"The Beauty Pageant industry in the US works much like this. The deal is that if you manage to become Miss Canned Peaches 2007, you'll get work opening supermarkets etc. Of course, when you do win it turns out that the pageant scammer is far to busy drumming up fees from next year's crown of entrants to be getting work for you."

I come from Australia where, despite providing a couple of Miss Universes over the years, pageants are a usually limited to wet T-shirt contests and prestigious Miss Nude title. Therefore, I have had little experience in this particular swindle. However, with a little research, it becomes obvious that the pageant scam is just as prevalent as the modeling scams.

In the US. where there seems to be more beauty pageants than beautiful people, the promoters will travel from city to city and state to state repeating the scam over and over again. Using their contacts in the modeling industry combined with a hefty advertising campaign, the promoters will entice entrants to the context with the promised of begin signed to a big modeling agency and a huge case prize. All the victims need to do is to pay a small entry fee and they will be the next Miss Swindle 2008.

However, the 'big modeling agency' require new photos and charge sign up costs. Also, the big cash prize always seems to go to the same girl, a confederate of the pageant promoters who travels around with them and is set up to always win.

The judges, the promoters, the host and the winner are all part of the scam.

Variations
The pageant scam can be applied to young children and men as well.

Take
Entries fees in dodgy pageants range from $100 to $1500. With the added fees for make up, photos and other 'expenses' the con artists are set to make a packet.

Keywords
Long con

Created by Nicholas J. Johnson
Australia's Honest Con Man
www.conman.com.au

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