read about the case of a 70-year-old hong kong woman who allegedly fell victim to a phone scam, resulting in a loss of hk$258 million. 10 suspects have been arrested in connection to the incident.

Did this 70-year-old Hong Kong woman fall victim to a phone scam and lose HK$258 million? 10 suspects have been arrested!

In the bustling streets of Hong Kong, a 70-year-old woman finds herself entangled in a web of deceit and manipulation, potentially losing a staggering HK$258 million to a cunning phone scam. As the authorities take action, ten suspects have been apprehended in connection to this alarming case. The story unravels with twists and turns, shedding light on the dangers of fraud that lurk behind modern technology.


The Disturbing Details of the Phone Scam

The account of a 70-year-old Hong Kong woman falling prey to a sophisticated phone scam has shocked the community. The fraudsters managed to siphon off a staggering HK$258 million over nearly two years. The victim, an elderly businesswoman, was misled by individuals posing as mainland law enforcement officers who accused her of being involved in a money laundering case.

How the Scam Unfolded

The fraud began in February 2022, when the woman received a call from someone claiming to be a mainland law enforcement officer. She was falsely accused of committing money laundering and was told she would face arrest unless she cooperated fully. To prove her innocence, she was convinced to set up six bank accounts and transfer her money into these accounts for “investigative purposes.”

The woman was subsequently instructed to download a mobile phone app through which she unknowingly revealed her bank account details and passwords. She was assured that her money would be returned after an “asset assessment.” Unfortunately, she transferred her entire fortune over 23 months.

The Moment of Realization

In January of this year, one of the scammers arranged a meeting with the businesswoman outside a bank, promising to return her money. However, the so-called official never appeared, and she discovered that the six accounts were empty. Realizing she had been scammed, she contacted the police.

The Ongoing Investigation

Acting Chief Inspector Lo Chun-kong, from the New Territories North technology and financial crime squad, revealed that the scammers had transferred the majority of the money into 44 other accounts across the city before making withdrawals. The police managed to freeze some bank accounts, containing over HK$1.5 million, but a significant portion had already disappeared.

The HK$258 million loss is seen as merely the tip of the iceberg. The Hong Kong police have undertaken comprehensive investigations to tackle the rise in similar phone scams. Notably, there have been fewer cases this year compared to last year, but the financial losses have quadrupled to HK$789 million.

The Impact of the Crackdown

In a recent crackdown, more than 430 detectives were deployed in the northern New Territories, leading to the arrest of 245 suspects linked to 179 deception reports worth HK$540 million. Amongst these were phone scams, online investment frauds, and employment scams.

Senior Inspector Lau Wing-lam highlighted that the arrestees included students and foreigners who were exploited by criminal syndicates. These groups took advantage of young people’s desire for easy money and foreigners’ lack of local legal knowledge to recruit them for fraudulent activities.

Combating Fraud Syndicates

The recent arrests included 164 men and 81 women, some suspected of holding accounts used by fraud syndicates to collect money from victims. The crackdown on these “stooge accounts” is a critical step in fighting financial crimes. Those arrested face serious charges, including obtaining property by deception and money laundering, with penalties of up to 14 years in prison.

Moving Forward

The case of the elderly businesswoman is a stark reminder of the dangers posed by phone scammers. As the police continue their efforts to dismantle fraud syndicates, the public is urged to remain vigilant and cautious about unsolicited calls and demands for money.


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