Man, 22, charged over alleged role in credit-for-sex scam

A 22-year-old man believed to be a member of a syndicate involved in a $1.25 million credit-for-sex scam was charged in court on Thursday.
A 22-year-old man believed to be a member of a syndicate involved in a $1.25 million credit-for-sex scam was charged in court on Thursday.PHOTO: ST GRAPHICS

SINGAPORE - A 22-year-old man believed to be a member of a syndicate involved in a $1.25 million credit-for-sex scam was charged in court on Thursday.

Liew Yii Tern was charged with two counts of cheating for allowing his DBS bank account to be used to receive more than $40,000 from two victims, who had been led to believe they were making pre-payment for sexual services.

The Malaysian was also charged with one count of dishonestly receiving a stolen POSB ATM card.

Calling the three charges against Liew the "tip of the iceberg", the prosecution officer said that there were many more charges were to come.

Liew has been remanded at the Central Division to assist in further investigation.

The victims had been befriended by females on social networking platforms such as WeChat, who asked the victims to buy cards and online shopping credits which could be exchanged for sexual services.

In a variant of the crime, victims were instructed to reveal their PIN numbers and leave their ATM cards in certain locations in public areas, in the belief that the cards would be returned after they met the females.

However, the monies in their account was instead pilfered and in some cases, the accounts were also used to receive funds from other victims of the scam.

For each charge of cheating, Liew could be jailed for up to 10 years and fined.

He could also be fined and jailed for up to five years for dishonestly receiving a stolen property.

andreang@sph.com.sg