A California man whom authorities say trolled dating apps and websites for female dining companions is facing charges after allegedly bailing before the bills arrived and stranding his dates with the tab, PEOPLE confirms.
Paul Guadalupe Gonzalez, 45, defrauded eight women of more than $950 over a two-year spree from May 2016 to April, according to a criminal complaint filed by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
In an unrelated incident, he also allegedly skipped out on his bill at a hair salon, the D.A.’s office said. (It is unclear from that reported incident whether he was gussying up for an allegedly free meal out on the town.)
The reputation of Gonzalez as the “dine-and-dash dater,” as he is described in a news release from prosecutors, evolved after he allegedly went to dinner with his dates at restaurants in Pasadena, Long Beach, Burbank and L.A., the D.A.’s office reports.
“Gonzales is accused of taking financial advantage of women he met mostly through dating apps and websites,” according to authorities. On their dinner outings together, “he ordered and consumed food and drinks, then allegedly left without paying any of the bill,” said Deputy District Attorney Michael Fern of the D.A’s Cyber Crime Division.
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Among eight women who purportedly ended up paying the bill themselves, one did so in the belief that Gonzalez was going to pay her back, according to the D.A. office’s news release.
In two other instances the restaurants covered the costs, Fern said. Those businesses are among the alleged victims named in the criminal complaint, which charges Gonzalez with seven counts of extortion, two counts of attempted extortion and one count of grand theft — all felonies, according to the criminal complaint.
Gonzalez also is charged with two misdemeanor counts each of defrauding an innkeeper and petty theft.
He has entered a plea of not guilty on Monday and is being held in the Twin Towers Correctional Facility in lieu of $315,000 bail following his Saturday arrest, according to jail records.
An attorney who might speak on his behalf was not identified. He is next due in court on Sept. 7.
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