KUALA LUMPUR: Police on Monday detained nine foreigners and a local man believed to be members of the “Macau scam” syndicate which targets Chinese nationals and which has caused its victims to lose over RM3 million.
Kuala Lumpur police Commercial Crime Investigation Department (JSJK) head ACP Mohd Luthfi Ismail Abdullah said they were nabbed in a raid at about 6pm in Bandar Baru Seri Petaling here by a team from the Sentul JSJK.
Speaking to reporters at the Kuala Lumpur contingent police headquarters here today, he said those arrested were aged between 20 and 50 years, including a female Chinese national and a local man.
He said investigations revealed the syndicate was likely operating since April and had made Malaysia the centre of its operations to dupe Chinese nationals.
“Among the items seized in the raid were 52 handphones of various brands, 29 SIM cards, and 176 ATM cards of various banks,” he said.
Mohd Luthfi said each syndicate member received a monthly salary of between RM3,000 and RM5,000 and had entered the country several times since the end of 2015 using student and social visit passes.
On their modus operandi, he said the suspects would phone victims and pretend to be bank agents or police officers.
“The suspects would contact the victims at random, telling them that there was a problem with their bank accounts. In order to resolve this, the suspects would ask the victims to transfer funds from their account to a new account.
“The victims would only realise they had been tricked when they could not access the account after the fund transfer was completed,” he said.
Mohd Luthfi said all the suspects were being remanded until this Saturday for further investigation and the case was being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code.