Fourth suspect arrested for involvement in DHL parcel scam

A 23-year-old man was arrested on July 18, for suspected involvement in a DHL parcel scam.
A 23-year-old man was arrested on July 18, for suspected involvement in a DHL parcel scam.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - A fourth suspect has been arrested for his alleged involvement in a DHL parcel scam, the police said on Tuesday (July 19).

The latest suspect, a 23-year-old man, was arrested on Monday (July 18).

The police received a report on July 4 from a 32-year-old woman, who said that she received a call from an unknown person who claimed to be working for DHL. She was told that her parcel contained illegal goods, and was detained by the Chinese Customs.

The call was then transferred to another person whose number was reflected in the woman's caller ID as '999', and the victim was asked to provide her internet banking credentials, including the One-Time-Password (OTP) from her Internet banking dongle.

 

She later discovered that her internet banking account had been accessed, and about $36,000 had been transferred to an unknown bank account, the police said in a statement.

Following investigations, officers from the Criminal Investigation Department established the identity of a 23-year-old suspect and arrested him.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the suspect is believed to be involved in at least five other similar cases in which the victims had suffered losses amounting to a total of about $90,000.

The suspect is expected to appear in Court on Wednesday (July 20) for allegedly receiving stolen property dishonestly. The offence carries a jail term of up to five years, a fine, or both.

On July 16, the police arrested three men aged between 21 and 22 for their suspected involvement in the same parcel scam, in which a trio allegedly tricked an elderly woman into transferring $50,000 to them.

The police has urged members of the public to take precautions when they receive unsolicited calls, especially from unknown parties.

It said in June more than $4 million had been lost by victims of phone scams since March, and more than 50 reports had been received over the same time period. In most cases, the callers use the same modus operandi, it said.

A spokesman for DHL said in June that it had received more than 200 reports daily regarding the scam, after being alerted to it in early April. It has filed a police report.