World-renowned conman was hiding in Canada

Juan Carlos Guzmán-Betancourt arrested after crossing the border into Vermont

With a dozen aliases and a rap sheet that spans from Britain to Thailand to Canada, Juan Carlos Guzmán-Betancourt is a conman of epic proportions. Often compared to the gentlemen jewel thief in E.W. Hornung’s novels—and to Leonardo Di Caprio’s smooth-talking character in Catch Me If You Can—the 33-year-old Colombian is most infamous for escaping a British prison (he somehow convinced the guards that he could be trusted to attend a dentist appointment alone). His signature trick? He would stake out high-class hotels, identify a wealthy guest, and wait for him to go out. He would then impersonate the guest, tell the front desk that he lost his room key—and convince the hapless receptionist to hand over the code to the in-room safe. By the time the real guest returned, he was long gone. Wanted across the globe, Guzmán-Betancourt was arrested by border guards in Vermont after crossing over from Quebec. At last check, he hadn’t sweet-talked his way out of his cell.

Times Online

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