Police arrested a Nigerian man in Pattaya, eastern Thailand, yesterday under suspicion of catfishing and romance scamming several Thai women online, with damages amounting to 300,000 baht.
The catfish, 34 year old Ndubuisi, posed as someone else on Facebook and convinced several Thai women that he was in love with them. He deceived the women into thinking he was in a different country but would soon move to Thailand and marry them so they could start a life together.
The catfish told victims he would send expensive items as engagement gifts. Then, his Thai accomplice would pose as a customs officer and contact the women to say they needed to pay a duty tax fee to receive their gifts. But there were no gifts, no wedding, and no love.
After several women who fell victim to the scam reported their losses to the police, investigating officers gathered evidence that Ndubuisi caused damages of over 300,000 baht and presented it to Samut Prakan Provincial Court, who put out a warrant for his arrest, reports KhaoSod.
The accused fled to Pattaya but police tracked him down and arrested him at a rented property under suspicion of four charges: 1) defrauding people by pretending to be someone else, 2) inputting false information into a computer system, 3) being part of a criminal gang and 4) money laundering.
Police drove the accused to Bang Sao Thong Police Station in Samut Prakan province to face prosecution. Police didn’t say what kind of punishment Ndubuisi was looking at.
Officers said they will expand their investigation and arrest anyone else involved in the movement. It’s not clear whether they have tracked down the catfish’s Thai accomplice, the “customs officer.”
Last month, a Dutchman filed a 4 million baht lawsuit against his former girlfriend, a woman from Sakhon Nakhon province in northeast Thailand, who he says deceived him into sending her millions of baht for land and a house before abandoning him.
However, the Thai woman says it’s the Dutchman who is in the wrong for starting a relationship with her when he was already married to another woman.
Thai police say there were over 400 cases of romance scams in Thailand in January alone.
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