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Local victim of ‘fake police scam’ rescued by Macau cops in Mexico: PJ chief

2024-04-10 03:05     BY Yuki Lei    Comment:11

A local female teenager fell victim to a “fake police” scam, having been defrauded out of a total of 3.5 million yuan, while also having been “instructed” by the fraudsters to hide herself from her family members in five to six countries and regions, ending up in a remote suburb in Mexico where “the natural environment is relatively harsh”, Judiciary Police (PJ) Director Sit Chong Meng revealed yesterday.

Sit divulged the case details during a press conference about a new PJ anti-fraud programme, at the PJ headquarters in Zape.

According to Sit, the victim received a call from a scammer purporting to be a “mainland police officer” at the end of February, claiming that “her phone number had been involved in a money-laundering fraud case and the mainland public security authorities requested her arrest”. Sit said that the victim, at the “police officer’s” instruction, transferred a total of 3.5 million yuan into the scammers’ bank accounts between late February and mid-March.

Completely trusting the “police officer’s” claim that “her case had pushed a resident to commit suicide and that she would be killed by that person’s family members for revenge”, the victim departed from Macau by air, “hiding” in five to six countries and regions, without informing her family, Sit noted.

The case was not revealed until March 17, when the victim’s father reported her disappearance to the Judiciary Police, whose investigations showed that the victim left Macau on March 14.

With the assistance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Public Security Ministry in Beijing, as well as the International Criminal Police Organisation (INTERPOL) and the Mexican police, a special PJ team were dispatched from Macau to Mexico where they rescued the victim on March 31, according to Sit.

“This [the case] deserves our civil society to think twice,” Sit said, hoping that the local community, universities and colleges, as well as associations and institutions, will work together to raise awareness of the threat of fraud.

During the press conference, Sit noted that the Judiciary Police launched in the first two months of this year a total of 81 telecom fraud investigations, involving about 55.69 million patacas, adding that of these cases, 36, or 44 percent, involved students, with a total loss of about 24.2 million patacas, or 43 percent of the total amount.

Investigations into 126 cases of cyber fraud were opened, involving about 14.88 million patacas, between January and February, Sit said, pointing out that among them, a total of 43 cases, or 34 percent, involved students, with a total loss of about 1.48 million patacas, or 10 percent of the total amount received by the scammers.  


Judiciary Police (PJ) Director Sit Chong Meng delivers the opening remarks during yesterday’s press conference about a new PJ anti-fraud programme, at the PJ headquarters in Zape. – Photo: Yuki Lei


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