Sales promoter, accountant cheated out of RM263,000
KOTA KINABALU (August 2): A 27-year-old sales promoter has lost RM150,000 in a romance scam after she was allegedly tricked by a man she met through an online dating app.
The victim, who only wanted to be identified as Ting, said she started chatting with a man she matched on the dating app about three years ago, unaware that the online character was one of the identities that the accused known as “Chin” had. established.
The woman chatted with the Sarawakian for a year but had never met him in person.
Meanwhile, Chin allegedly tricked her into thinking he needed to borrow money for cancer treatment, surgery and hospitalization as he was suffering financially with promises to repay the loan.
A year later, Ting met Chin in person but Chin didn’t tell her he was the same person she had been chatting with.
In April this year, Ting suspected something was wrong because Chin knew information she had only shared with the man on the dating app.
“I confronted him but he denied it. And then he disappeared,” she said, adding that her “boyfriend” had promised her a future together.
The woman tried to get her money back, but Chin kept giving the excuse that he needed money for surgery and hospitalization, before finally cutting off contact.
She said the man paid her back RM20,000 once but borrowed money from her again a few days later.
Ting transferred RM150,000 to the man over 41 online transactions, with some of the funds she lent to family members.
Another victim was Soo, a 31-year-old accountant, who claimed he was cheated out of RM103,000 by Chin, his former neighbor who lived in a luxurious house and drove an expensive car.
Chin had convinced Soo that he could invest on his behalf, but the victim had to pay cash.
Between March and May this year, Soo had given the man between RM3,000 and RM30,000 over eight cash transactions, totaling RM103,000.
Soo said some of the money he “invested” was his wedding fund and he borrowed some from friends.
The man then claimed that the investment was making losses and asked Soo to inject more money to recover the capital he had invested.
In June, Chin informed Soo that he had to undergo surgery and couldn’t meet him in person, and eventually lost contact.
Soo, who had only known Chin for about two months, later found out that Chin’s house and vehicle were rented.
The two victims asked Luyang Phoong deputy Jin Zhe for help.
Phoong urged the public to beware and stay alert to avoid falling victim to scams.
“Malaysia has one of the highest scam cases in the world. Malaysia is a haven for scammers,” he said at a press conference on Tuesday.
He said his MP’s office alone receives reports of three to five cases a week of scam victims.
He pointed out that Chin, who allegedly deceived Ting and Soo, is still active in Kota Kinabalu and allegedly deceived more victims, including in other states.
“If you find yourself in a similar situation, someone tells you they have cancer or need money for treatment, please be aware (of a possible scam).”
He urged the public to think twice and seek help if they suspect anything fishy, and called on police to investigate cases.
Also present was the leader of the socialist youth of the Democratic Action Party (DAPSY) of Kota Kinabalu, Chan Loong Wei.