Vancouver police are investigating at least six incidents where women using online dating services were courted by thieves.

Const. Jana McGuinness says the women were approached by a faux-suitor who requested a rendezvous, only to steal from them "at the first opportunity."

The most recent incident occurred on Jan. 9, when an unsuspecting romance-seeker suddenly had her car black Honda Civic stolen.

"They had gone out on a date, she temporarily left the room and he ran out with her car keys," McGuinness said.

Police have issued a warrant for 36-year-old Thomas James Newman in connection with the car theft. McGuinness said Newman has a "lengthy criminal record" that includes charges of theft under $5,000 and possession of stolen property stemming from an incident last August.

A profile under Newman's name on the dating website describes him as "confident, charming and pretty much a joy to be around."

"I like to cuddle up to a pretty girl as much as the next guy," it says.

McGuinness said Newman was charged last year after taking a laptop computer and cell phone from a woman he met online. Investigators are trying to determine if he's linked to five similar thefts.

Police say the victims were approached on a variety of dating sites as well as on Craigslist, in incidents that span over the last few years.

McGuinness put out a warning to online daters not to let their guard down too quickly, no matter how charming their date may be. "Often people are very trusting in these personal situations, but you really have to be cautious," she said.

People on blind dates are also advised only to meet dates in public places until they become well-acquainted.

Anyone with information on the incidents or on Newman's whereabouts is asked to contact the Vancouver Police Department at 604-717-3321.

Do you have an online dating story to share? Post it in our comments section below