Parolee Accused of Swindling Area Residents

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A convicted felon was arrested on suspicion of swindling two Reno residents out of thousands of dollars after pretending he was a self-employed real estate agent who would soon inherit $2.1 billion, officers said.

Bobby Mann, 43, was booked last month on two counts of swindling and three counts of obtaining money under false pretenses.

He's accused of swindling a jeweler out of a $28,000 loan and $50,000 worth of jewelry, and a motel manager out of $5,000.

He had written each a check for $1 million and asked they not cash it until he could deposit his hefty inheritance in the bank.

"Bobby Mann is a con man in every sense of the word," police Detective Joe Lever said, adding Mann later confessed that he was not getting an inheritance.

Investigators said Mann tricked his victims into believing he was wealthy by using documents generated by financial institutions. Honest errors at two banks and luck aided him in his scheme, they said.

He dressed in expensive suits and carried wads of cash. He lavished acquaintances with jewelry and tipped waitresses $100 bills.

"Bobby Mann set up the illusion he was a man of substance, and gave the impression he was a certain kind of person," police Sgt. Todd Shipley told the Reno Gazette-Journal. "He sought people out and convinced them he was getting this inheritance.

"His whole line was ingratiating himself and convincing them he was their friend. Then he'd ask for money," he said.

Mann was paroled from prison about three months before his arrest. He served time for fraud and a third drunken driving conviction.