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Six men including four asylum seekers have been arrested in Hong Kong for allegedly operating a theft syndicate targeting drunk men on the streets of Hong Kong.

Between February and April of this year, seven victims reported to the police that they had lost their wallets and mobile phones while out drinking in Kowloon’s Tsim Sha Tsui district and the Lan Kwai Fong nightlife area in Central, Sing Tao Daily reported.

At the time of the thefts, the victims were all incapacitated from drinking. The suspects allegedly pretended to offer assistance, but in fact they stole their wallets, credit cards and mobile phones.

The suspects then used the credit card information for the transfer of money via various electronic payment platforms including Alipay, PayMe and WeChat Pay or to buy game cards in convenience stores which they would later resell for cash.

Police detected that around 100 illegal transactions and purchases worth a total of HK$200,000 (US$25,481) were made with the victims’ credit cards.

As a result of their investigations, police officers from the Western District Police Station arrested two Hong Kong men in Wong Tai Sin and Hung Hom in Kowloon, Ming Pao Daily reported.

Four South Asian men, said to be asylum seekers, were arrested later in Western District, Sham Shui Po and Kowloon City on May 10.

A total of nine Hong Kong identity cards, 11 mobile phones, two tablets and a safe containing a small amount of cash were seized in the operation.

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