An unusual Hong Kong phone scam case proves that two wrongs don’t make a right when an 81-year-old retired businesswoman was duped out of HK$3.95 million (US$500,000) by a suspect claiming she was trying to recoup cash she lost the same way.
The 81-year-old retiree, surnamed Wong, lived on her own in a Kimberley Road apartment in Tsim Sha Tsui, and had engaged in trading and property businesses in the mainland in the past, Apple Daily reported.
The Hong Kong businesswoman received a phone call from the scammers on March 30, Apple Daily said. The caller told Wong that she was involved in a money laundering case and was being investigated by Hong Kong and Chinese authorities.
She handed over three cheques worth a total of HK$3.95 million as a guarantee to a 25-year-old woman, who was believed to be one of the scammers, in separate face-to-face meetings, hoping to settle the case.
The retiree assumed that the cheques would not be cashed, but soon realized that it was a scam last Saturday, Sing Tao Daily reported. She called the police after the same scammer called again seeking another HK$520,000 payment on Monday.
A 25-year-old mainland woman, also surnamed Wong, was arrested. The suspect told the police that she had been the victim of a phone scam and was only trying to recoup the HK$30,000 that she was tricked out of by doing the same to others.