Unsuspecting victims lose over RM320K in business cons

BATU PAHAT: Two people have been duped out of more than RM250,000 in separate business scams.

One of the victims is a retiree in his 60s who lost his savings after investing in a company purportedly exporting fruits to Singapore, while another is a manager of an electrical company who was duped into supplying equipment to a Chinese school.

Sources said the retiree had befriended a man who persuaded him to invest in his fruit business in Batu Pahat in 2022.

“The retiree was promised good returns. He was enticed with the idea as it was fruit season around his village,” sources said, adding the victim paid over RM100,000 in several payments.

Sources said the victim became suspicious recently when the friend could not be contacted.

He went to the friend’s home in Pontian, Johor, to find that the latter had moved out and there was no such business, the sources said, adding that the victim had lodged a police report.

In the other case, a manager in her 50s received a phone call in February from someone who claimed to be the administrator of a Chinese school.

The caller said the school was planning to purchase more than 30 generators.

Sources said the caller informed the manager that in order to win the tender, her company needed to buy the items from a particular firm appointed by the school.

“The manager agreed and paid more than RM100,000 to the firm for the purchase of the generators.

“She became suspicious when the items did not arrive after several weeks.

“She lodged a police report after the school denied that there was such a tender,” the sources added.

In another unrelated case, a retiree in her 50s was duped of RM120,000 in a fake job scam in Tangkak.

Sources said the victim, who wished to earn some extra income, was offered a job via WhatsApp by a company to boost its online ratings.

“The victim was also told to make some purchases online and was promised that she would be reimbursed along with her commission.

“Within two days, she carried out multiple transactions totalling more than RM120,000,” the sources said, adding that the woman realised she had been duped when she did not receive the items or payment for the purchases.

A Bukit Aman official confirmed all of the cases and said they were being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code for cheating.

He advised people, especially retirees, to be wary when doing business with people they only meet online.

He advised using the Semak Mule mobile app or visiting https://semakmule.rmp.gov.my to determine if the bank accounts or phone numbers in question are associated with suspicious activities.

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