KUCHING, March 4: Two women suffered a loss of of RM377,556 after being duped by Macau Scam (phone scam) syndicate in two separate cases recently.
Sarawak Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) chief Supt Maria Rasid, in a press statement today, said the first case was reported in Kuching involving a 36-year old woman who was scammed a total of RM241,556.
According to Maria, on Jan 22, the victim received a call from from someone claiming to be from Tax Operation Office of Inland Revenue Board (LHDN) in Cyberjaya, informing that she had a 15-month of company’s tax arrears, including a crime record involving money laundering and drugs smuggling activities.
“A second suspect who identified himself as a senior police officer from Pahang District Police Headquarters (IPD Pahang) told the victim there was a bank account under her name which was used for criminal activities. The alleged account had a total of RM228,000.
“The victim was asked to declare the money using ‘Bank Negara Malaysia’ mobile application where the victim then furnished her bank details, identification number, automated teller machine (ATM) pin card number, as well as her password.
“Following that, the suspect then instructed the victim to transfer a total of RM26,000 from her Maybank account to her CIMB bank account for safe keeping,” she said.
The victim was also directed to make a personal loan of RM200,000 from a bank, in which after the approval of loan, she was instructed to bank in RM189,684 into her CIMB bank account.
“The victim only realised that she had been deceived after checking her bank account balance and found that the money has disappeared after confirming the matter with the bank,” she added.
Maria disclosed the second case involved a 57-year old woman in Mukah who lost a total of RM136,000 after making six transactions between Feb 8 and 25.
She said on Feb 6, the victim received a phone call from a man identifying himself as “Inspector Khoo” informing that the victim was involved in a money laundering involving a total of RM2.8 million and her name was being used by individuals to open up a bank account for the activities.
“The suspect also told her the Ipoh High Court had issued a warrant of arrest against her and instructed her to report herself by sending her picture through WhatsApp application, and later claimed that he could help solve her case provided that the victim pay a certain amount of money into the given account.
“The victim was also instructed to keep the matter as a secret from anyone including her own family members, and believing that the suspect could help in resolving the case, the victim made six transactions totaling RM136,000 through ATM and online to five unidentified bank accounts between Feb 8 and 25,” she explained.
Maria said the victim realised that she was being scammed only after sensing something amiss and told her family members about the matter who then proceeded to make a police report in Mukah police station.
Meanwhile, Maria advised the public to remain calm and verify with the relevant authorities if they ever received any phone calls from unknown individuals saying that they were involved in crimes such as drugs, money laundering, tax arrears, banks loans and many others.
She urged those who received suspicious calls to contact or personally go to the government agencies or departments and financial institutions involved to confirm on the matter.
“If the contact was made through a phone call, make sure that the phone number is correct. Do not contact the number that was used to call you by the unknown individuals.
“At the same time, inform your family members, relatives or close friends about the matter, and do not keep it as a secret,” she cautioned.
Maria emphasised that the police or any government agencies or departments will never request any money transaction into an individual’s bank accounts in order to solve any cases.
“Do not disclose your banking or financial information to strangers who contact you by phone. Contact the nearest police station if you are in doubt about the phone call or WhatsApp or send a SMS (short message service) to CCID Infoline at 013-2111222.
“Apart from that, the public can also get the latest information involving financial fraud by visiting the official Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) website at rmp.gov.my, ccid.rmp.gov.my and CCID Facebook,” she said. — DayakDaily