Singapore: 42-year-old conman arrested for luring foreigners with fake job ads on WhatsApp

WhatsApp job scam
WhatsApp job scam in Singapore (IANS) Pixabay

A 42-year-old man, who had offered jobs to foreigners in Singapore by sharing fake advertisements on WhatsApp, was arrested on Wednesday, April 4.

Reports stated that many victims fell for these messages and paid the accused S$50 for his services. Once he received the money, he went incognito and was untraceable.

The local police, who arrested the suspect on Wednesday, April 4 after the initial probe, said on Thursday that they received several reports from the victims of the job scam on March 29.

In a statement, the police reminded the public to be cautious while dealing with strangers, who claimed to provide a job posing as an employment agent. The officials also said that people should verify the identity of such unknown people before entering into any transactions or handing over money. He will be produced before the court on Friday.

Several cases of such scams have come to the notice of the police recently and most of them are using the social media to trick people. Earlier, an investment scam which started through Facebook by a man claiming that in three months their money will be doubled under a new scheme.

After cheating 165 people, and collecting S$2,000 from each, the conman was arrested on March 2. When a victim asked him to return her money, the accused tried to dodge the issue telling her that he was hospitalized for kidney stones and that his daily bank transfer limit was $50,000.

Under Section 415 of Singapore's Penal Code, the available punishment for cheating depends on the specific nature of the crime but the default punishment is up to three years' imprisonment, fine, or both.

This law defines cheating as an offence in which a person (A) deceives another person (B) and either:

• Fraudulently, or intending to cause wrongful loss to B or wrongful gain to A, causes B to deliver property to A; or

• Intentionally causes B to do or omit to do something which B would not have done if he or she had not been deceived. The act or omission must also cause or be likely to cause damage or harm to any person in body, mind or property.

A convict of money laundering can face a punishment up to 10 years' imprisonment with or without a fine of up to S$500,000.

This article was first published on April 6, 2018