British ‘mastermind’ of scam ring put under remand

PUTRAJAYA: A British man, believed to be the mastermind behind an international investment scam ring, has been remanded for four days to assist investigations.

The remand order was issued by Magistrate Irza Zulaikha Roha-nuddin at the Putrajaya Magistrate’s Court yesterday. The suspect will be remanded until Friday.

Sources said the suspect was the mastermind detained during Ops Tropicana on Feb 21.

“The suspect was the general manager for two ‘boiler rooms’, or call centres for the syndicate.

“During the raids, the Immigration Department detained the suspect. Upon further investigation and eyewitness statements, the MACC detained the suspect on Monday,” the sources said.

The MACC also recorded the statements of three Australian citizens, who were victims of the syndicate, yesterday.

On Feb 21, the MACC, with the cooperation of other agencies including the Immigration Department, busted an investment syndicate allegedly masterminded by the Briton following 24 raids and the arrests of 81 suspects.

The raids were conducted simultaneously at call centres, companies and houses in the Klang Valley and Penang.

The syndicate has operated since 2019 and has amassed almost RM200mil after duping victims in Australia and the United Kingdom.

MACC chief commissioner Tan Sri Azam Baki had said that the commission cooperated with the Immigration Department, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), the Companies Commission of Malaysia, Tenaga Nasional Berhad and the Inland Revenue Board.

The modus operandi of the syndicate was to offer fake investment portfolios through advertisements on social media.

The syndicate members were from Australia, Britain, South Africa and the Philippines.

It is believed the syndicate was part of an international scam ring that has duped victims across the globe, resulting in about RM1bil in losses.

On Feb 28, MACC also raided an office that would have been used as a hub by scammers in the country.

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