Thursday November 3, 2011 RM861,000 lost in cyber scam By RASHITHA A. HAMID firstname.lastname@example.org
KUALA LUMPUR: Police arrested four Nigerians and a Malaysian woman who allegedly conned a retired Australian policeman of US$275,000 (RM861,437) in a cyber scam.
The five, including the woman who is a college director, were arrested on Monday after the 68-year-old victim travelled to Malaysia and lodged a police report on Sept 19.
It is learnt that the victim, who lives in Australia, became acquainted with the main suspect a Nigerian student in his 20s through a social networking site.
Federal Commercial Crimes Investigations Department director Comm Datuk Syed Ismail Syed Azizan said the suspect had posed as a cancer-stricken woman.
Comm Syed Ismail said investigations showed that the suspect claimed “she” originated from Hong Kong and inherited US$7.5mil (RM23.5mil) worth of assets from her father in Malaysia.
“The suspect claimed she' did not have a beneficiary.
“She then asked the victim to prepare several documents naming him as the beneficiary should anything happen to her,” he said.
“The suspect also sent several e-mails containing a letter of warranty and authority, and National Bank and legal documents to convince the victim,” Comm Syed Ismail told The Star.
“Assuming the documents were genuine, the victim banked in US$275,000 (RM861,437) into a (Malaysian) account in stages as payment for processing fees.”
On Sept 8, the Australian flew to Malaysia to meet up with the woman.
“Upon arrival at the airport, she took him to a hotel in Kuala Lumpur where a Nigerian man was waiting with a bag full of US dollars,” he said.
“They told the victim that he had to obtain an international transfer certificate in order to take the money of out Malaysia.”
Convinced, the victim returned to Australia without receiving any money from them.
However, several days later, the Australian realised he was duped when the woman asked him to bank in US$310,000 (RM971,000) to pay for the certificate.
The man flew back to Malaysia and lodged a police report.
Comm Syed Ismail said police tracked down the five suspects through the bank account number which was registered under the 56-year-old woman.
He said both the director and the Nigerian mastermind were picked up at the college on Monday and they led police to the other three accomplices in Bukit Puchong.
“All the suspects have been remanded to facilitate investigations under Section 420 of the Penal Code for cheating,” he said.
Investigations also revealed that the group targeted lonely men and women.