SINGAPORE: Eleven men were arrested after for their suspected involvement in more than 25 cases of scams, where victims lost over S$281,000, the police said on Tuesday (Mar 24).
The men, aged between 26 and 51, were arrested between Mar 9 and Mar 18, the Singapore Police Force said in a news release.
One of the 11 was a 42-year-old man who was arrested on suspicion of being involved in six e-commerce scams amounting to more than S$52,500.
“He had used a WhatsApp group to reach out to his victims, asking if they wanted to purchase face masks,” said the police.
He then became uncontactable after the customers made advance payments via bank transfers.
He was charged on Mar 12 with cheating, and could be jailed for up to 10 years and fined.
Another pair arrested, aged 32 and 36, were believed to be involved in a similar face mask scam on e-commerce platform Carousell. Their victims lost more than S$140.
Also arrested were five men who allegedly allowed their bank accounts to be used by criminals to facilitate scams, police said.
Some of the men – aged between 26 and 44 – are being investigated for cheating, while the others are being investigated for money laundering, which carries a heavier sentence of up to 10 years’ jail and a fine of S$500,000.
Another three men arrested were involved in at least 13 separate cases of cheating that involved wine investment and the purchase of gaming equipment and antique products, amounting to more than S$212,500.
“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 authority said.
They also warned members of the public to be careful when making online purchases, especially during the COVID-19 outbreak.