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Love, Janessa
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Love, Janessa

Author: CBC + BBC World Service

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Behind every catfish, there’s the bait. Who is Janessa Brazil? Stolen images of an adult entertainment star are being used to con victims out of thousands of dollars, breaking hearts in the process. Journalist Hannah Ajala embarks on a quest to find Janessa, in this 7-part true crime series. And who is responsible for catfishing scams? Produced for the BBC World Service and CBC Podcasts by Antica Productions and Telltale Industries.
8 Episodes
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“I love her. I just love her!” You meet someone online. It turns out many others think they have fallen for the same person. Introducing the search for the unwitting face of a digital con. With host, Hannah Ajala. Launching 23 January 2023. Audio for this trailer was updated on February 8, 2023.
New Year’s Eve. Simon receives a message from a beautiful stranger, named Shirley: “Greetings…from my world to yours.” A digital flirtation begins. Then Shirley needs cash – fast. Shirley’s photo is actually adult entertainment “cam girl” Janessa Brazil and many accounts are using her image to lure victims. Who is Janessa? Has she any idea that she’s the bait in worldwide catfishing schemes? Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
Episode 2: The Big Fish

Episode 2: The Big Fish

2023-01-3040:438

Roberto is in love. Without ever seeing her or talking to her, he thinks he falls deeply for Janessa. He sends thousands of dollars and begs her to leave the adult entertainment world. Everyone tells the Italian sustainable farmer that he’s being scammed. Then why is Janessa coming to meet him at an airport in Europe? Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
Episode 3: Meet The Boys

Episode 3: Meet The Boys

2023-02-0640:405

Tracking down scammers – how and why do they do it? One tells host Hannah Ajala: “I always feel bad”. Researchers estimate half of global romance scams originate in West Africa. In Ghana, there are the Sakawa Boys. The conning process can involve staying up late, chatting on the phone… building trust and deepening the connection - a bit like a real relationship. It takes time to fall “in love”. Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
Episode 4: Helen of Troy

Episode 4: Helen of Troy

2023-02-1330:375

Where is Janessa Brazil? She seems to have vanished. Then, she turns up somewhere unexpected. Is that really Janessa on a radio show, with the wife of a scam victim? Meanwhile, Hannah discovers that justice is hard to come by. Can victims of romance fraud even get their money back? Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
Episode 5: Bubba

Episode 5: Bubba

2023-02-2027:453

“I'm an offensive person.” Can a shock jock radio talk show host help us find Janessa Brazil? Meet Bubba the Love Sponge Clem. Bubba and Janessa used to host his show together and they were even housemates. Did they talk about romance scammers using her images? And does he know where Janessa is now? Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
Episode 6: Love, Vanessa

Episode 6: Love, Vanessa

2023-02-2739:5713

Her real name is Vanessa. Her model name is Janessa Brazil. Where does Janessa end and Vanessa begin? Vanessa tells her story and reveals the human cost of being the bait in catfishing schemes around the world. Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
When the fish met the bait. Roberto has a broken heart and lost thousands of dollars to scammers. Vanessa had her images stolen by scammers and her life fell apart. An emotional finale. Please note, this series contains adult themes and strong language. For transcripts of this series, please visit: https://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastnews/love-janessa-transcripts-listen-1.6770736
Comments (9)

squogg

This has been a fascinating ride that I just couldn't get off. Listened to the whole series in one day! Very well done.

Nov 2nd
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Oct 21st
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Michael WRITTER

love this podcast.

Mar 24th
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Feb 11th
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Nonto

This episode is missing a crucial piece of information: what reason did Janessa give for not making it to/vanishing in Duesseldorf? Did Roberto even ask her?

Feb 1st
Reply (4)