Manti Te’o was gamed and conned. The con wasn’t about money but was very real nonetheless.
My wife Sue was close friends with someone for six years. His game started unraveling when he was dying. Sue discovered “Dave” had at least twelve identities with driver’s licenses and birth certificates, and six wives (he just never bothered divorcing before marrying again.) He never got money from Sue. His enjoyment came from spinning tales and keeping the con going. Sue still has no idea who he actually was, and while he never overtly hurt Sue, he did waste her precious time. This applies to Manti Te’o, who appears to have been tricked and made a fool of.