Thai man deceived by online lover loses 3.5 million baht in elaborate scam

Photo courtesy of Sanook

A Thai man fell victim to an elaborate online scam where he was deceived by a woman on Facebook. Despite never meeting in person, the man known as Toon, was convinced to transfer a total of 3.5 million baht to the woman, known as Boom Bim, only to find out that she had used another woman’s pictures and had lied about her life circumstances.

The story began when Boom Bim initiated a conversation with Toon on Facebook. She claimed to be the ex-girlfriend of Toon’s friend, Tawan. Although Toon had a friend named Tawan, he had never met this woman before. Attracted to her profile picture, he began chatting with her and agreed to start a relationship online.

Their relationship developed, and even though they had never met in person, they engaged in phone sex and even referred to each other as husband and wife. Toon admitted that he had never had a girlfriend before but felt a strong connection with her.

However, throughout their relationship, Boom Bim never showed her face during video calls and declined all of Toon’s attempts to meet face to face. She claimed that their stars were not aligned and that if they met, her parents would die.

On top of these unusual behaviours, she constantly asked for money, citing reasons such as required surgery, her mother’s illness, her parents’ death, tuition fees, and various other expenses. In his trust and love for her, Toon ended up transferring a total of 3.5 million baht.

Toon discovered the deception when he found out that the pictures Boom Bim had used were of another woman, named Aom. The pictures were taken from Aom’s Facebook profile and the posts of Aom’s relatives. Toon tracked down Aom and together, they proceeded to file a report to the police, providing the pictures as evidence and attempting to find the real identity of the scammer.

Additional scam victim

Another victim of this complicated scam is a woman named Wasana Lao-on, also known as Was, whose name matched the one Toon had been transferring money. According to Boom Bim, Wasana is her real name.

Wasana, however, claimed that she lived in a different district and had no connection to anyone involved in the case. She had already graduated, was in a relationship, and was about to get married. The incident had caused her significant trouble as she received numerous messages and had to file a daily report, reported Sanook.

The real Wasana, also known as Pon or Prae, admitted to receiving money from Toon but claimed that it was for goods that Toon had sold and lottery winnings. As for the amount of 3.5 million baht, she claimed she was unaware of it and had never taken the time to calculate the total amount of money she had received from him.

The incident has left a trail of victims and confusion, with the real identity of Boom Bim still a mystery. Legal action is being taken, with cyber police involved, as using another person’s pictures and information to deceive and defraud is a serious offence.

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Crime 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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