Everything that’s happened to the women from The Tinder Swindler since the Netflix film
Cecilie hasn’t had a serious relationship since Simon Leviev
The Tinder Swindler on Netflix tells the almost unbelievable story of the victims of Simon Leviev. Simon, real name Shimon Hayut, told women he met on the dating app he was the son of a billionaire and used this to scam them out of thousands, when they believed they were in a relationship. The story has hooked the entire world, but the stories of the women who came forward as victims of The Tinder Swindler for the film don’t end there.
They’ve had their dating lives changed forever, but have become determined to make a change for other victims in similar situations. Here is everything that’s happened to the three women who came forward as victims of The Tinder Swindler, since the Netflix film was released.
The Tinder Swindler victims set up a GoFundMe to get their lost money back, and it’s since raised over £100k
After the show was aired, Cecilie Fjellhøy, Pernilla Sjoholm and Ayleen Charlotte set up a fundraiser to try and get back some of the money they lost after meeting Simon Leviev. Cecilie is said to have sent him over £200k whilst Ayleen lent him £100k. The films states Leviev stole around $10million (£7.4million) from his victims, all over the world.
Right now, the women have raised a huge £158k in donations, with their target set at £600k. There have been nearly 8,000 donations, with the highest being a single donation of £3k.
Cecilie has said she still hasn’t heard from the police officer who is meant to be chasing her case
At the end of the show, we find out Simon Leviev is now a free man and has never been prosecuted over what happened to the three women. Cecilie has said she is “desperate” to see Simon behind bars, giving an update on her current police investigation. Speaking to OK! Magazine, she said: “People often ask me, ‘How has he got away with it? What are the police doing?’ And I have to say, ‘Your guess is as good as mine’. The truth is, I haven’t heard back from the police officer who was supposed to be chasing my case. I have no idea what’s going on.
“I’m desperate to see Simon behind bars but any day in court would be about protecting him from other people – it wouldn’t be about giving me the chance to say something to him. I just want him in jail so he can’t do this to anyone else. He doesn’t deserve my time but he does deserve to serve time for what he’s done to so many people and companies across Europe.”
Cecilie hasn’t had a serious relationship since Simon Leviev
As the film concludes, Cecilie said the awful ordeal hasn’t put her off Tinder, and she’s been back on the dating app. In an interview after the film she said she is “out there” dating, but hasn’t had a serious relationship since. “I’ve been reflecting a lot this last week about relationships and how I feel about them,” she said. “I am out there in terms of dating but I haven’t had a long-term or deep relationship since it happened.
“I think everything Simon did has harmed the way I’m dating and perhaps I’m scared of opening up. I have baggage now – at least I see it as baggage. But with time, I’m hopeful. I have healed but I still think there’s a long way to go in that respect. There’s shame attached to stories like this and I don’t want anyone who’s been a victim to feel ashamed which is why I’m talking about it.”
Speaking on Lorraine, she added: “I think what happened was so extraordinary and it was such a weird and movie like what it was, and I didn’t want to put that on other men, it’s not other men’s fault what he did to me. And he’s taken so much from us. I didn’t want him to take that part of me, that truly believes in love and I’m still trying but it’s been painful.”
Pernilla also said her dating life has changed since Simon Leviev
“I can meet people sometimes…but I go through good and bad periods,” Pernilla told OK! Magazine. “I have a lot of trust issues. For example, if someone does something nice towards me, I can become very suspicious and think there’s an evil agenda behind it.”
Pernilla has also revealed she hasn’t watched The Tinder Swindler documentary in full
Despite being a key figure in the documentary, Pernilla is yet to watch the film in full. She said her story is “scary to share”, adding: “I still can’t watch some parts of the documentary – I still haven’t seen it in full. I look away or hide behind my hands because some parts are just too much.”
Cecilie has set up a new organisation
Today, Cecilie continues to live in London where she works as a senior UX designer at Sopra Steria – a Paris-based software development company. She is also the founder of action:reaction, a non-profit organisation which aims to support victims of fraud and campaigns to change legislation to ensure victims get the right help. She has become a public speaker on fraud and tells her story.
“As for what’s next, it’s a big world and it’s hard to know where to start, but I’ve started in my home country of Norway,” Cecilie said. “I’m talking to politicians about fraud because the system when it comes to money is so rigged towards protecting the banks. I’ve started an organisation but I’ve not been able to get it off the ground yet because I’ve been trying to fix my own life. When I have the energy I’ll go out there and speak up for the cause.”
The women have been contacted by even more victims of Simon Leviev
Cecilie added she has had lots of people contact her saying they were nearly swindled by Simon Leviev too. “Since our story hit the media, I’ve been contacted by people who almost got defrauded by Simon,” she said. “I’ve had messages saying, ‘I met him in Amsterdam…but we only went on a couple of dates and that was it – he never asked me for money’. I think, ‘Oh, great for you!’ The truth is, he met with so many people and then picked the ones he knew would help him out when he was pretending he was in need.”
Cecilie and Pernilla have become best friends and have been on TV together
One good thing to come out of the entire story is that Cecilie and Pernilla remain besties to this day. Their Instagrams are filled with pictures of them together – including a holiday they took to Mykonos, Greece in 2021. Cecilie and Pernilla also appeared on Lorraine together, to talk about the release of The Tinder Swindler on Netflix.
The women have also commented on what celebrities have had to say about the documentary
Speaking to OK! Magazine, Cecilie has slated celebrities who have watched the film and only used their platforms to come out and say they have met Simon Leviev before. French Montana tweeted to say he had met Leviev previously and Cardi B made a joke at the situation.
“That’s what they’re doing after watching the documentary and seeing women in pain,” Cecilie said. “They have all that power and such a big following and instead of sending some sort of a message about the pain he’s caused, they just want to show that they met him. Some people think the same when they meet me. They smile and want a picture like this was a performance – not a traumatic experience.”
Cecilie says she still cries at voice notes Simon sent her, and worries she will never be able to move on
Cecilie has admitted that she sometimes still does listen to the voice notes she was sent by Simon Leviev, and they still upset her. “When I listen to some of the voice notes Simon sent me on the documentary or on a podcast, they still make me cry,” she said. “It’s like the trauma of it is right there in my face again. The outpouring of love has been tremendous from all over the world but I still feel scared that I’m not going to get peace and be able to put it behind me.”
The women have gained loads of Instagram followers, and have been sharing life updates
Since the film, the three woman have gained loads of Instagram followers, where they have been sharing more day-to-day life updates. Cecilie currently has 262k followers, Pernilla has 272k and Ayleen has 67k. Ayleen only recently got back onto social media – straight after the film it looked like she wasn’t active, but she now has an Instagram where she regularly posts.
But not all the followers the women have gained have been supportive – Cecilie said gets messages telling her she and the other women aren’t “victims” of The Tinder Swindler, and deserved what happened. “Someone has even direct messaged me on Twitter to say I deserve everything that’s happened to me,” she said. “They said they’ve been sending Simon messages asking to be his ‘apprentice’ because they’re happy he swindled a gold digger.
“It’s so disgusting but I don’t let it break me anymore. These people just want your attention. I also still see people online twisting what actually happened. I saw one girl comment, ‘Who just gives out a loan of $300,000?’ But I never did that – none of us did. People are commenting without knowing the full story. But then there are people supporting you and saying, ‘Keep fighting!’ which gives you a lift and keeps you moving forward.”
The Tinder Swindler is now ‘in talks’ to be turned into a movie
The film has been so successful that Netflix is planning on turning The Tinder Swindler story into a drama movie. According to Variety, Netflix is in talks with producers about dramatising the wild documentary and sources indicate the conversation is in early stages, and that the tone of a potential film is still being worked out. The film was produced by the same people who brought us Three Identical Strangers and Don’t F*** With Cats and was directed by Felicity Morris – and it’s now in line to get the documentary to film treatment, as a full feature.
It hasn’t yet been made clear if the women will feature in the film, as it would feature actors playing victims of The Tinder Swindler, not the real life people. But, given how pivotal they are to the story, you’d expect if this film does come out they will be involved in some form.
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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Featured image via Netflix.