Local ‘friend’ cheats mainlander out of HK$600,000

A local man was arrested at the Barrier Gate checkpoint for cheating a mainlander out of HK$600,000 after claiming he could help him repay his debts in Macao.

Macao fraud

A local man was arrested on Monday at the Barrier Gate checkpoint for cheating a mainlander out of HK$600,000 after claiming he could help him repay his debts in Macao, Judiciary Police (PJ) spokesman Chan Wun Man said at a regular press conference on Wednesday.

The 50-year-old suspect surnamed Vong told the police that he is unemployed. The victim and Vong had been friends for five years.

According to Chan, the mainlander recently reported to the police that he had been cheated out of HK$600,000 by a local friend who had promised to assist him in repaying his debts in Macao. He told the police that he owed someone in Macao HK$1.6 million. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, he was unable to travel to Macao to repay the debt, aside from other factors such as the mainland’s foreign exchange controls and exchange rate issues, so he contacted Vong for assistance.

Vong advised the victim to remit the money to his local casino VIP account so that he could withdraw the money and repay the debt on his behalf.

However, Vong also asked the victim to pay him 2 per cent of the repayment amount as “handling fee”, i.e. HK$32,000.

According to Chan, the victim transferred HK$500,000 in two remittances on August 13, 2020, and another HK$600,000 to Vong’s VIP account on the next day.

After receiving the three remittances, Vong paid HK$1 million to the creditor on behalf of the victim.

However, the victim later discovered that Vong had failed to pay the third remittance of HK$600,000 on his behalf to the creditor. The victim repeatedly asked Vong about the matter, and Vong eventually admitted that he had gambled away the HK$600,000. The victim reported the case to the police.

According to Chan, PJ officers arrested Vong on Monday night at the Barrier Gate checkpoint when he was about to leave Macao. Under questioning, Vong denied that he had received any money from the victim but – in an obvious contradiction – admitted he had gambled away the HK$600,000.

Vong was transferred to the Public Prosecutions Office (MP) on Tuesday, facing a fraud charge involving a considerable amount, officially defined as exceeding MOP 150,000, according to Chan.

(The Macau Post Daily/Macao News)
Photo by Macau Photo Agency