Thai-Chinese gang arrested for dating app scam at Chiang Mai luxury resort

Police revealed yesterday that a Thai-Chinese gang had been arrested in Chaing Mai for carrying out illegal dating scam business after a tip-off.

Police apprehended 24 people after a member of the public alerted authorities to a group of Chinese men behaving suspiciously at the luxury Chaing Mai holiday resort. The gang included 20 Chinese and 4 Thais, 2 of the gang were female, three of the Thai criminals were not legally registered in the country, while the Chinese offenders were all illegally in the country.

Director of the Center for Combating Transnational Criminal and Illegal Immigrants, Witsanu Prasartthong-o-sot, revealed that officers were monitoring the actions of the group staying in Chiang Mai’s Fang district and had obtained a court warrant to search the premises of BK Resort and BK Coffee at Moo 7, Tambon Mae Soon, before making the arrests.

Officers seized ten computers, more than 240 mobile phones with SIM cards and two USB keys.

The investigation revealed the gang’s secret plot to scam Thais and foreigners into investing in a fake trading app named Metatrader through dating apps. The group created hundreds of fake accounts with photos of beautiful women to lure their victims. Once the victims transferred their money, the fake women cut off all contact.

The suspects explained to the police that they were paid around 25,000 to 30,000 baht per month. They rented an apartment at the resort together and worked at the office behind the retreat from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays and 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends.

All of the fraudsters were charged with unlawful assembly with intent to deceive the public by impersonating someone else. They were also accused of uploading distorted or false information into the computer system with the intent to deceive others and the public.

Witsanu told Thai media they would further investigate the 20 Chinese suspects on their legality to be in Thailand. All the suspects were charged with forming a conspiracy to defraud people, impersonating others to deceive people, and developing a fake computer system to deceive people.

THE SOURCE: Nation | Khaosod | Thairath