PETALING JAYA: Malaysian and Singaporean police have busted a syndicate that reaped in more than RM2mil in profits by scamming people with fake job offers.
Bukit Aman Commercial Crime Investigation Department (CCID) director Comm Datuk Mohd Kamarudin Md Din said a joint raid by the Singapore and Malaysian police in Johor led to the arrest of three suspected syndicate members.
"On Aug 26, a combined team that included the Singapore Police Force's Commercial Affairs Department raided a condominium in Taman Desa Skudai, Johor Baru. Three locals aged between 21 and 27 were arrested," he said.
Comm Mohd Kamarudin added that various electronic devices were seized, including seven handphones, two laptops and two routers were seized.
He added that the investigation showed that the group would use social media to offer jobs as purchasing agents. Victims were promised around RM200 to RM300 in daily income and were told to purchase items according to a given list.
"They will be reimbursed with an added commission of around 5% to 8%. This will repeat for cheaper purchases. However, when victims then purchased more expensive items, they were not paid back," he said.
Victims were then told that there had been issues with the transfers and that additional charges such as processing fees and tax penalties had also been incurred.
Comm Mohd Kamarudin said that the syndicate was believed to have been linked to 95 reports lodged in Singapore, with losses amounting to SGD690,000 (RM2,150,474.92).
One report lodged in Malaysia has also been linked to this syndicate, with losses of around RM21,700.
"The three arrested were known to have been responsible for transferring the profits from mule accounts to e-wallet accounts that had been given by the syndicate's higher ups," said Comm Mohd Kamarudin.
"They then used the monies to purchase the cryptocurrency Tether, and were giving a daily commission of 0.2%. Efforts by both Malaysian and Singaporean police to trace down the remaining members of the syndicate are underway," he added.
In a related matter, Malaysian police have received 164 police reports between January and July 12 regarding scams involving supposed jobs as online purchasing agents.
Losses have been estimated to be around RM2,394,430.14.