Police crack down on fraud ring targeting females in China

Taipei--Taichung police have busted a criminal organization based in the central Taiwan city that specialized in swindling money from female members of a Chinese dating website.

Seven suspects, including a man surnamed Lin believed to be the head of the telecommunications fraud ring, were arrested during an April 18 raid of an apartment in a high-end residential building in the city's Beitun District of the city, Taichung police said Sunday.

Police also seized computers, mobile phones, fraud manuals and about NT$230,000 (US$7,576) in cash during the raid.

Before going in, police had confirmed the apartment was the fraud ring's operational headquarters, where members picked out female targets from the jiayuan.com (????) website and hooked them with photos of men they described as interested in getting married.

The fraudsters would communicate with the target via the QQ instant communication system, and once they got more familiar with the target after befriending her for a month, they would carry out various schemes to try to swindle money from her, the police said.

The criminal group has cheated the women of more than NT$1 million to date, according to police, who said their investigation into the case was being expanded.

The scheme was one of several new strategies for committing fraud that have emerged lately after Chinese authorities took action to block suspicious phone calls from abroad and reinforced measures to crack down on unscrupulous businesses selling consumers' personnel information, the police said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel