The Story of a Victim From 32 Years Ago…Abe/Alex/Lew has a life-long past of scamming people

I met Abe, who called himself Lew Berlin, at a hotel bar back in 1983 or 1984 while having an after work wine with a friend.  My first impression was that he was kind of dorky, which probably made him seem safe. He was with his wingman, the VP of Bonus Bags, which was Lew’s advertising company, and they were in town to meet with clients. His VP was named Ken and he was a big guy. Ken’s last name was something like Torkelson and he was from Atlanta.

Bonus Bags made an advertising coupon book that was attached to the brown paper bags that grocer’s put the groceries in at check-out. Clients that I know he worked with were Sentry and Red Owl. He was traveling between Milwaukee, Minneapolis, St. Louis and somewhere in Ohio.

Lew was flirtatious and he charmed me immediately. We went out for a nice dinner at the hotel restaurant. I wish it would have ended there.

Lew told me that he was divorced and had a two year old daughter. I believe he called his ex Sharon. He said that he had a lot of money and she did not have to work so she spent her days at the beauty salon getting her hair and nails done or shopping. Sharon still lived in the LA area, possibly Monterrey, which was his base of operations.

He told  me many stories that are familiar to readers of this blog. He said he came from a wealthy Jewish family. He said he had a law degree but didn’t practice law. He told me he was a folk singer during college. He claimed that he was related to the family that owned a popular junior fashion house in New York but I don’t remember the name right now. He said he was distantly related to Irving Berlin. He also said that the original family name, changed by immigration officials, was Balene (or Baleen, not sure of spelling) which might be a clue to other identities.

Lew was interviewed by “Advertising Age” and he showed me the article. It helped give him credibility, although the tone of the article was somewhat skeptical.

I knew Lew for 1-2 years, although it was only sporadic. He made all kinds of promises and said he wanted to bring me into his world. There were all kinds of clues that he was not what he claimed but I wanted to believe he was true.

Lew scammed me with a car deal. He claimed to be buying cars for a free giveaway for Bonus Bags and he could get a discount for me. I took out a loan and paid $9000 for the car, which never arrived. When I starting putting pressure on Lew he paid back some of the money, maybe about $2000-2500.

He told me he had cancer as a way of gaining sympathy.

Of course, Lew eventually disappeared with the remainder of the money.

I did try to pursue it legally but did not have the financial resources to continue to pay the lawyer. I also reported him to the local police and FBI but it was not an important case to them.

Lew was working with Red Owl in Minneapolis when I last talked to him. I did eventually talk to someone there who worked with him and she said they had heard he was in jail.


(Blog Master comment: If Abe/Alex/Lew had cancer in 1983, 32 years ago, I think it is time that a scientific study should be done to find out how he has managed to survive all these years.

Our timeline (see at bottom of blog) shows that Abe/Alex/Lew was married in 1984 but I don’t think Abe ever lets morals or laws get in his way)

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Abe’s Life of Crime Continues

For all of you who have been following Abe’s life of crime, I am sure you are wondering why things have been quiet lately. If there is one thing we know for sure, it is that Abe never lets a day go by without trying to separate someone from their hard earned possessions and money. Unfortunately everyone does not find this blog, but fortunately for Lee, his friend did.

Abe Berlin, identifying himself as Alex Berlin called Lee who works at a precious metals dealer selling gold & silver

Alex claimed that he wanted to set up a trust for his nephew and before he would set up the trust he needed to liquidate $750,000 of assets, mainly in property in Santa Monica.

Abe (going by the name of Alex) built his story with tales of woe which included:

  • His wife died;
  • His son Nathan died
  • He was dying

Lee, as most people with a heart would do, felt sorry for him and reached out to Alex in friendship.  He offered to look at Alex’s Santa Monica condo and told Alex that if his wife liked it, he would purchase it.

“I’m very sick”, Alex repeatedly told Lee, claiming that he had six to nine months to live.

Lee made an appointment to look at Alex’s condominium, but first made some arrangements to help Alex out. He knew of a marijuana clinic from his friend “Bob” whose mother had been suffering before she died and marijuana had helped ease the pain. Alex told him that he would happily drive into California from Arizona where he is taking care of his mother (in fact, Abe’s mother Mildred Bemel died in 2011), because he normally comes to California once a week anyone. (By the way blog readers, Abe’s parole states that he is not to leave California but he has been totally non-compliant and California keeps ignoring his breaking of the law.)

When Alex came in the next week, they arrived at the marijuana dispensary “Alex/Abe was told that because he had an Arizona driver’s license they could not treat him.

Lee continued to feel sorry for Alex and they began speaking daily developing a close relationship.

Alex claimed to have developed a kidney dialysis machine for which he stated he had a patent. He brought his friend Carlos along to back up this bogus claim. Alex also claimed to be an attorney.

Then Lee asked to see the condo:  Alex’s response was, “Oh, I want to clean up the property first, we can see it tomorrow”.

Alex/Abe showed him an M Berry (a “Miracle” fruit tablet sold on and other places), claiming he owned the patent. Alex then offered Lee a partnership in that business, which he does not own.

The night after they went to the marijuana clinic, Lee took Alex to a motel where he could spend the night. The motel asked for a credit card. Alex said that he did not own a credit card and that he paid cash for everything. The motel insisted on a credit card so Lee obligingly offered his.

After leaving Alex at the motel, Lee called his friend Bob back. Bob had done some sleuthing and found out that the Santa Monica condo that Alex was to show Lee the next day was at a non-existent address. Also, Lee had noticed that when Alex showed his driver’s license to the motel clerk, the name on the license was “Abraham Berlin” and not Alex. When Lee asked about the name difference, Abe/Alex claimed he just liked the name Alex better.

Lee and Bob had plenty of reason at this point to doubt Abe’s story and did a little research. That is when they discovered this blog.

Lee, now armed with the knowledge that Abe/Alex is an outright fraud and thief, returned to the motel, and shared his information with the clerk. The two of them went to Berlin’s room and told him basically the charade had come to an end and he had to vacate the room. He tried to argue the point but I gave him a look (and I am physically fit). He thought better of it and then Berlin quietly packed his bag and left.

Berlin has been kicked out of many places when his deceit and lies have come to light, not to mention his colorful history of crime, but he is undaunted by the shame and humiliation because as a true sociopath, he doesn’t feel the usual emotions that most people feel. He certainly feels no remorse and has no conscience. So readers, BEWARE.

Lee’s story

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New Email Addresss

I have been locked out of If you have written to that email address during the past few weeks, please write to me again at

Many people are accessing the site. Please add your experiences with Abe/Avraham/Lou/Alex etc. to the site.

If you write to me privately, your correspondence will remain confidential.

The Blog Master

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Abe/Alex Still Trying to Get Over

This email came from an annoymous source:

Hi! I sure am grateful for your website. I thank GOD for leading me to it!
I met Alex on Christian Mingle a few weeks ago, and have only yet texted and talked with him on the phone. He certainly is very charming, and because I have had the unfortunate experience to have encountered sociopaths before, I have been very cautious with giving out my personal information to strange men. Well, I did give Alex my name, phone number, address, and even my email address. Alex told me that he wanted to send me some pictures via email.

Alex had told me all of the same lies about himself. He said that he was a Patent Lawyer, a Biomedical Engineer, just wrote three plays, told me he was a distant cousin of Irving Berlin. He told me that he was extremely wealthy. He told me about his bladder diversion surgery that had been done, and that he has a bag that holds his urine, and that he also has MS. He told me that he only travels by grayhound because of his MS, and was supposed to come and meet me last week, and then, suddenly, he ends up in the ER. He states that he has a colostomy done, and that he also has an inoperable brain tumor. Supposedly, he is still in the hospital.

I just stopped answering his letters last night after I found your blog. I do not know if I should actually tell him,, or just avoid him, and not answer him. His last text indicated that he was starting to receive rehab. The strange thing, after reading all of the information on your blog, I found out that he already has had this colostomy. I did ask him where he was, and he said that he was at Banner Health Services in Phoenix, AZ.

I am certainly grateful that I found your website, and I would like to prevent any woman from getting involved with this sociopath!

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Abe Berlin, Lew Berlin, Abraham Lewis Berlin, Elliot Loren Bemel, Alex Berlin, Alex Berle, etc. has NOT REPORTED IN FOR PROBABATION.
If anyone knows of his whereabouts, please let us know.

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One of Abe’s Children Speaks Out

Something positive has happened admist all this horror.
Even though Lew is, well, practically useless – the wonderful, good hearted, loving, caring, honest, trustworthy women he took advantage of have raised some good children.
I have personally met a sibling, officially confirmed with DNA testing, and I’ve gotta say that he is simply amazing.
I have built a caring relationship with him and his family, and will continue to do so for as long as they’ll have me in their lives.
To respect his privacy, I won’t go into anymore detail at this time.  
I will, however, kindly request that if there are any other children out there smart and curious enough to find this blog, *PLEASE* do not be afraid to communicate.  The blogmaster will keep everything anonymous to protect you.  The blogmaster has my permission to put us in touch with one another too.
As a child I remember always thinking that we were the only ones.  Surely nothing this crazy could happen to anybody else.  And right then our closet ends up with one large skeleton.  One we must never speak of, because the shame has overcome all the adults in my world and they’d rather shove it down and throw away the key.
Unfortunately that is one of the ways he gets all his powers.  Charm accounts for something, but the fear and shame which causes so many of us to “keep quiet” only fuels his flame.  He’s a professional liar and thief, and he preys on the vunerabilities and insecurities of anyone within his reach.
So my point is that if you’re out there, just like i was, thinking that you’re the only one… you aren’t.  And there are caring, honest people here who will listen to you.  Don’t be afraid anymore.  Reach out and let’s build something together.


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Abe Strikes Again…and the Victims Increase

I am the latest victim. On 5/23/14 I responded to a craigslist add for a 1996 Mercedes. I was told health issues forced the sale and after hearing his story, felt sorry. He assured me the title was clean, even though it said nontransferable. It was from a speeding ticket that had been paid. I even gave him a ride to the Greyhound station so he could go visit his daughter in CA. He took $3,500.00 from me and left. I found out about the restitution lien on the car when I went to get it registered. The reason I am upset more than anything is that I need the car to take a friend who suffered a brain trauma get to his doctor and rehab appointments. I now have a car I can’t register and a friend who will not be able to get around. Alex (Abraham) was texting me until Friday, now nothing. I’m going to print your blog and the court records I have found and make a police report and visit the DA’s office. I feel like such a fool…

  • Hi David, Abe has been perfecting his lies for over 40 years and is a great liar w/o any conscious. Honest people cannot believe someone else would be dishonest so we become the victims.
    Please let us know what happens when you go to the DA.. Thanks.

    ALSO, David, what State did this happen in? California refuses to do anything. Maybe another state will finally be interested in protecting victims instead of the perp.
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