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Have You Been Had by Plasma Pat?

The city of Largo is looking for an alleged con man who's got it all. The bitchin' nickname, "Plasma Pat." The elegantly simple, three-step scam: 1) pretend to be a Wal-Mart employee, 2) offer customer deal on a plasma TV, 3) pocket cash. And he's an insufferable braggart -- Plasma Pat says he's hoodwinked 30,000 Floridians, including some of your Fort Lauderdale neighbors. Said a Largo lieutenant:

"He's bragged about how many victims he thinks he's had over his lifetime," Loux said. "I've listened to the calls, and he shows no remorse. He blames the victims for their greed."
Plasma Pat's real name, say Largo police, is Joseph Wesley Torma. And that's the picture the cops are circulating in hopes they'll hear from more victims, most of whom they guess are too embarrassed to come forward.

That 30,000 claim is a bit hard to believe -- like Wilt Chamberlain's claim of 20,000 lovers. Consider: Plasma TVs have only been mass-marketed since about 1997. That means that to get to 30,000, he cheated roughly seven people per day, every day, for the last 12 years.

Or else Plasma Pat started his career as Analog Andy?

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Thomas Francis

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