11 suspects under probe over illegal payment services

The public should always reject requests by others to use their bank accounts.
The public should always reject requests by others to use their bank accounts.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Six men and five women are being investigated after they allegedly offered their bank accounts to help receive and transfer money to other bank accounts in return for a commission.

The suspects, aged between 20 and 40, are said to have committed the offences between April 25 and June 5 after they had responded to online advertisements which were offering "jobs" as home-based personal assistants and in accounts.

Some of the suspects allegedly also assisted with the dealing of cryptocurrency, the police said in a statement on Tuesday (June 9).

It is an offence for anyone to carry on a business of providing any type of payment service in Singapore without a licence unless there is an exemption under the Payment Services Act. Offenders can be fined up to $125,000, jailed for up to three years, or both.

The police warned those looking for jobs to be wary of advertisements that promise the convenience of working from home and pay high salaries for easy responsibilities.

Legitimate businesses will also not need the job seekers to use their own bank accounts to receive money on the businesses' behalf, the police said, adding that these are common ruses used by scammers to make others help them carry out illicit payment services on their behalf.

To avoid becoming involved in money laundering, the public should always reject requests by others to use their bank accounts.

For more information on scams, visit the website or call the anti-scam hotline on 1800-722-6688. Anyone with information on such scams may call the police hotline on 1800-255-0000 or go to the iWitness website.

 

For questions on the Payment Services Act, the public can contact the Monetary Authority of Singapore at webmaster@mas.gov.sg.