Massive online scam nets billions, dozens arrested in Thailand

Photo courtesy of The Nation

The Thai authorities swooped on a sophisticated online scam that left victims reeling with losses exceeding 800 million baht.

The online scam was orchestrated by a criminal syndicate, reportedly handling funds upwards of 5 billion baht, and targeted unsuspecting individuals through the guise of lucrative investments in Thai and foreign stocks, drawing them into financial ruin.

Following complaints from over 50 victims, the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) orchestrated a special operation that culminated in dramatic raids at opulent condominiums nestled in the heart of Bangkok.

During the raids, law enforcement officials apprehended two suspects, identified as 26 year old Malaysian national Li and his 30 year old Thai girlfriend, Natthanich. These individuals stand accused of carrying out fraudulent transactions.

A hoard of evidence was seized during the operation including 33 computers, 65 mobile phones, 84 bank books, 13 cash cards, 25 SIM cards, and various other items valued at 5 million baht.

A third suspect, identified as 42 year old Malaysian national Cheong, was also apprehended in Songkhla’s Sadao district. Cheong is believed to have played a pivotal role as a liaison for cross-border transactions.

The trio of suspects confessed to their involvement in a cunning scheme that involved enticing individuals to establish legal entities and open bank accounts, all in the pursuit of enhancing credibility and facilitating illicit financial transactions.

Reports suggest that the perpetrators, operating for over two years undetected, raked in handsome compensations exceeding 100,000 baht per operation. Adding to the net of deceit, four Thai individuals have also been detained, with the CIB vowing to leave no stone unturned in their quest to dismantle the syndicate.

According to victims, the scam unfolded with the promise of investment opportunities in local and foreign stocks under the guise of reputable brands. Entrapped victims were then ushered into a VIP Line group, where they were bombarded with what seemed like foolproof information on lucrative investments.

To seal the deal, victims were coerced into using a deceitful application called Nicshare, which later proved to be a trap, reported The Nation.

The promised profits vanished into thin air. Despite being promised hefty returns, victims were trapped in a vicious cycle where withdrawals became increasingly elusive, leading to demands for more investments and a hefty 20% tax.

Bangkok NewsCrime NewsThailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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