WSVN — A criminal Casanova accused of using South Florida women for money won’t be dating again anytime soon. Wednesday, the state ruled, he’ll stay locked up for the next year. Investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero is back on the case.
Given his resumé, Frank Amanti does not seem like he’d be a hot commodity in the online dating game. The 46-year-old once “took a steam iron and burned the tops” of a woman’s feet. He’s racked up convictions on everything from felony battery to grand theft and his profile includes an array of mug shots, dating back to the 90s.
But this information is not how Amanti sold women on what he had to offer.
Mother: “He said that he doesn’t work, he’s retired, that his father left him a lot of money. He was living off of like a trust fund.”
Daughter: “I guess he was a professional, I guess, at what he does because over time I actually started liking him a lot.”
This woman is Amanti’s ex-girlfriend. She and her adult daughter, who asked we not show their faces, are the latest women to come forward after a 7News investigation revealed the felon has had a very active social life since serving six years in state prison.
Mother: “The relationship, he was trying to move it very, very fast. He was talking about marriage.”
Nana Iosava: “He wanted to marry me.”
Annie Smulevich: “You know, I started liking the guy.”
All three women tell the same story: they met Amanti on dating websites. He told them he had just returned from serving in the military. And all three say he wrote them bad checks.
Mother: “That’s what he does. He meets people online and gets to know them very quickly and before they knew it, he’s out of their life and he’s left them high and dry.”
Last month, a judge found Amanti guilty of writing Nana Iosava $14,000 in bad checks and ordered him to pay her back.
But Nana says her romance with Amanti left her in the hole for more than $200,000, after she bought him jewelry, a motorcycle, even co-signed a lease for a Mercedes.
Nana Iosava: “I feel like I lost. I lost anyway. I owe, right now, banks.”
Amanti is now back in custody because he didn’t tell his probation officer where he was living, which he was required to do.
Meanwhile, there is already concern about the day he gets out.
Mother: “We’re going to hear from him. A couple of times he did say that we don’t want to get on his wrong side and we don’t want to see the other side of him. So that’s kind of a scary thing to say.”
The mother and daughter were so afraid, they went to court asking for protection– accusing Amanti of stalking them.
Mother: “He called me from jail. He had an inmate’s girlfriend call me.”
Amanti, who testified by phone from a prison in North Florida, says the two were on good terms until the latest arrest and he was just calling her about his belongings.
Frank Amanti: “All I was worried about was my car, some of my belongings, my watch, my wallet and the little bit of money I had when I got arrested at her house. So I never ever stalked her. I mean, we were on good– she was my girlfriend until that morning, until I got arrested.”
A judge denied the women’s petitions, saying Amanti’s conduct did not rise to the level of repeated, malicious harassment.
But even in silhouette, his ex has a clear message for other women– if Amanti should reappear on the dating scene.
Mother: “Don’t believe anything he has to say. He obviously doesn’t learn from his previous mistakes.”
Carmel Cafiero: “Police say there’s a lesson here that goes beyond Frank Amanti. At the beginning of any new relationship, keep an eye out for red flags and instead of being led by your heart, go with your gut. Carmel Cafiero, 7News.”
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