BUKIT MERTAJAM: Love scammers have struck again, this time cheating a single mother here of more than RM900,000.
Central Seberang Prai OCPD Asst Comm Shafee Samad said the woman, an accounts clerk at a shopping centre in Butterworth, parted with RM927,400 between April 9, 2019 and Feb 12 this year after falling victim to a syndicate.
"The 58-year-old befriended a man, claiming to be William Schang from the United States, through social media in April 2019.
"After a while, they exchanged numbers and started chatting through WhatsApp, forming a romantic relationship.
"The man then asked the victim for financial assistance in his petrol exploration business in the United States.
"The man promised to return the victim's money along with a commission.
"Believing him, the victim then conducted 50 transactions with five different bank accounts totalling RM927,400," he said in a statement on Monday (June 21).
ACP Shafee said after depositing the money between April 2019 and February this year, the victim tried to contact the man several times but to no avail.
"She then realised that she had been cheated and lodged a police report yesterday (Sunday, June 20).
"The woman is believed to have withdrawn her savings from her EPF.
"Further investigations are ongoing to trace the owner of the bank accounts used by the syndicate," he said.
ACP Shafee said they did not discount the possibility that the man could have used mule accounts for the transactions after checks showed four of the five accounts were linked to cheating cases in other states.
The case is being probed under Section 420 of the Penal Code for cheating.