Three Penang women lose RM1.7m to Macau scam

GEORGE TOWN – Three women in Penang suffered a loss of nearly RM1.7 million after falling prey to scammers who accused them of being involved in money laundering activities.

Penang deputy police chief Datuk Fisol Salleh said the first victim, a clerk living in Bukit Mertajam, lodged a police report on Dec 19 claiming that she had been scammed out of RM1,026,200 since July.

According to him, the victim told the police that she was contacted by scammers who disguised as a postal worker and a police officer and accused her of being involved in money laundering activities.

“Panicked and scared that she would be detained by the police, the victim followed the suspects’ instructions to transfer her husband’s insurance money and savings to 13 separate accounts,” he said at a press conference here today.

Fisol said the second victim, a 41-year-old teacher from Seberang Perai Selatan who suffered a loss of RM203,200 lodged a police report on Dec 19, adding that the victim, who had been in contact with the Macau syndicate scammers since November, took out a bank loan amounting to RM190,000 to pay them to avoid being arrested by the police.

Another teacher from Seberang Perai Utara also made a police report on Dec 23 after losing RM439,000 to scammers, he added.

“The victim also took out a bank loan totalling RM300,000 to pay the syndicate where 15 transactions were made to eight separate accounts involving a total loss of RM439,000,” he said.

Fisol said further investigations were underway, adding that the three cases were being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code for cheating.

“From January until yesterday, the Penang police recorded a total of 2,239 cybercrime cases involving a loss of RM79.5 million with the Macau scam cases being among the highest recorded at 921 cases involving a loss amounting to RM27.14 million,” he added. – Bernama / pic TMR File