‘I feel like a pig’: Simon Leviev’s driver speaks of guilt over The Tinder Swindler case

‘I’ll be honest, sometimes I feel like I’m partly to blame’

A man who worked as the driver for The Tinder Swindler has spoken of his guilt for being involved in what the conman has done to victims all over the world. Speaking on The Making Of A Swindler podcast, the driver says he feels “partly to blame” and wishes he had never become involved with Simon Leviev.

Episode one of the podcast, hosted by filmmakers from the Netflix film, speaks to Jamal – a pseudonym used to protect his identity. He is a chauffeur based in London, who works the luxury circuit. In 2018 he worked for Simon and was assigned to be his personal driver. “I drive a lot of high net worth clients – big names, big titles, probably internationally known, could be in business or celebrities,” Jamal explains.

He says he worked frequently as a driver for Simon Leviev, and met his business partner Avishay and bodyguard Peter. When he first met Simon, he assumed he was “some flamboyant kid from a rich dad, just wanting to enjoy life” whereas Avishay was quiet, kept to himself and “didn’t talk much”. He explains Simon asked for him whenever he was in London, and soon offered him a job paying $7k a month – money which would never actually materialise.

The driver for Simon Leviev has spoken about The Tinder Swindler case

via Instagram

Jamal describes Simon as “charismatic, a very nice man”, and says he “would drill himself into your heart, make you feel like you’re special and then he leaves you”.  He says there was a “constant flow” of different women spending time with Simon. “Whenever I met Simon, he would have a completely different lady with him,” he says. “We’d drop her off, and an hour or two later he would meet up with another girl. During the day he could be having four or five different girls.” Jamal says he thought Simon was just a “horny, horny guy”. He’s “a rich kid, he’s just screwing around with everybody”.

During his time as the driver for Simon Leviev, Jamal met Cecilie, driving her to the airport after her first date with Simon. Jamal told Cecilie Simon was a nice guy, and he had been working for him which Cecilie said was comforting and reassuring to hear. “Obviously it was awkward for me because the way the picture looked with Simon, it looked as though I was working for him – this is how the picture was painted. We kept it that way, just to please Simon, not to please Cecilie,” Jamal says.

Jamal says he now feels guilty that he unwittingly confirmed Simon was a nice guy, and made Cecilie feel what was going on was safe and true. “It’s not nice for me to say this, I feel like a pig myself to be involved in that scene and encouraging Simon to do what he’s done,” he says. “It’s had an effect on me, it’s not nice, it’s disgusting and it’s not part of me.”

The driver for Simon Leviev has spoken about The Tinder Swindler case

via Netflix

On the podcast, Jamal can then be heard saying “sorry” and “I don’t like this”, before leaving the car he is being interviewed in. Filmmakers then say he is “visibly upset”. “It’s not nice you know, treating people like that, it’s not nice at all,” Jamal says. “I didn’t [know what he was doing] but he was hurting people and damaging them emotionally and he’s done that to me too and it’s not nice.”

When asked how he feels about meeting Simon, Jamal adds: “I try to erase it – like I said, the guy played an emotional part with me, promised me things he never delivered and it’s disgusting. Why would anyone do that? I’ll be honest, sometimes I feel like I’m partly to blame for it, for allowing him to have that full picture of him being something that he’s not. I do blame myself, a little bit. I made him look like he’s ‘the man’ – made him look and feel like he’s the boss. Had I known who he is and what he does, I would never have got involved. A guy like that needs to be put away, that guy’s dangerous and the world needs to be aware of people like him.”

The Tinder Swindler is available on Netflix now. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

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