The Police have arrested a 26-year-old man and a 17-year-old female teenager for their suspected involvement in a series of e-commerce scams involving the sale of trading cards.
In October 2020, the Police received several reports from victims who were purportedly cheated by an online seller selling Pokemon trading cards at a discounted price on Carousell. After payments were made by the victims via bank transfers and PayNow/PayLah, the seller became uncontactable.
Through investigations and collaboration with Carousell, officers from the Commercial Affairs Department established the identities of the duo and arrested them on 12 October 2020. Preliminary investigations revealed that the duo is believed to have cheated more than 10 victims of more than $2,000.
The man will be charged in court on 14 October 2020 with cheating under Section 420 of the Penal Code, Chapter 224. The offence of cheating carries a jail term of up to 10 years and a fine. Investigations against the teenager are ongoing.
The Police take a serious view of persons who may be involved in scams and frauds, and perpetrators will be dealt with, in accordance with the law. The Police would like to advise members of the public to be very careful when making online purchases:
- Opt for buyer protection by using in-built payment options that release payment to the seller only upon delivery. Whenever possible, avoid making advance payments or direct bank transfers to the seller.
- Scammers may entice buyers to contact them directly through messaging platforms such as WhatsApp or WeChat by offering a better or faster deal if bank transfer payments are made directly to them. They may also use a local bank account or provide a copy of a NRIC/driver’s licence to make you believe that they are genuine sellers. Do not fall for it!
- If the price is too good to be true, it probably is. Purchase only from authorised sellers or reputable sources, especially for high-value items.
For more information on scams, members of the public can visit scamalert.sg or call the anti-scam hotline at 1800-722-6688. Anyone with information on such scams may call the Police hotline at 1800-255-0000 or submit information online at www.police.gov.sg/iwitness.
Source: Singapore Police Force