KUALA LUMPUR: A woman was duped of RM100,000 after scammers faked government letters to scare and cheat her.
Lee Kim Chooi said she was afraid after getting the documents and proceeded to make the payments requested by the scammers.
Her ordeal started on Feb 2 when she received a call claiming to be from Tenaga Nasional Bhd Terengganu stating that the electricity at her property there would be disconnected.
The 46-year-old woman said that when she told the caller she did not own the premises, the call was transferred to “Sarjan Albert Lai”, who told her she was involved in a money laundering operation.
On Feb 14, after numerous correspondence, she was told she would be arrested if she didn’t pay RM40,000.
Scared, she paid the amount demanded.
Two days later, the caller called her again and asked for another RM20,000, supposedly as bail.
Again, she paid the amount, and the caller issued her fake government letters and receipts to convince her.
Between Feb 20 and 28, Lee deposited a further RM40,000 into four accounts.
“I was scared because of the letters,” she told a press conference at Wisma MCA yesterday.
On March 18, she was contacted by another “police inspector”, who claimed that she had a chance to get her money back plus a little more as a reward if she helped him with their investigation.She was told they had made a breakthrough in the case and that she could sue a bank manager, the main suspect, who had used her details for money laundering.
But she had to make another RM38,000 payment via a loan and sue the “suspect” to get a RM200,000 reward. She then did as they demanded.
However, the “officers” became uncontactable after the money was paid.
Lee said she only revealed the story to her husband after making the payments, and he quickly took her to the Kepong police station on May 15 to make a report that she had been scammed.
In total, Lee lost RM131,500.
“Most of it was from my savings. I also had to borrow money to make the payments,” she said.
MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head Datuk Seri Michael Chong, who organised the press conference, said scammers preyed on her by using the fake documents.
“This is just the tip of the iceberg. As of today, six people have come forward to complain about being scammed (in such a way).”
Chong also said he had received many more calls about such scams, but the victims declined to come forward.
He added that Lee was not confident that she would ever get her money back but came forward to warn other potential victims.