Banker loses RM3m in love scam


KEPALA BATAS (June 8): A female banker lost more than RM3 million to a man named ‘John Eric Chen’ who she connected with via a dating and social networking app called Coffee Meets Bagel.

In a statement today, Seberang Perai Utara district police chief, ACP Noorzainy Mohd Noor, said the 51-year-old victim started getting to know the man, believed from a love scam syndicate, last August.

“They became close and started communicating via WhatsApp, with the suspect offering to collaborate with the victim in a Shell business which would see them reap US$25 million (RM1 = US$4.15),” he said, adding that as part of the deal, he asked her to make a down payment of US$38,000.

Since that period, the victim made 19 money transfers to three accounts totalling US$815,331 (about RM3.38 million) made up of her salary, savings and money borrowed from relatives.

While the suspect had promised marriage, he became uncontactable after he had swiped her money, said Noorzainy.

“Believing she had been conned in a love scam, the victim made a police report on June 4 and the case is being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code,” he said.

He said members of the public should not fall in love too easily with someone they’ve just gotten to know on social media networks like Facebook and Instagram, or transfer money to someone they’ve never met.

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