Fourth Malaysian man arrested over $5.4m scam

A fourth Malaysian man has been arrested for his involvement in a 2017 impersonation scam in which a woman lost about $5.4 million.

The 39-year-old man was arrested in Kuala Lumpur on Monday with the assistance of the Royal Malaysia Police, the Singapore Police Force said yesterday, when he was taken back to Singapore. He is expected to be charged over dishonestly receiving stolen property.

In 2017, a woman was tricked into believing that she had to surrender all her money to the authorities to assist in criminal investigations.

She delivered her money to different strangers at various locations in Singapore over a week, and the suspects left the country soon after, police said.

The fraudsters allegedly impersonated officials from China.

Three other Malaysians have been arrested for this alleged impersonation scam over the last year with the help of the Royal Malaysia Police. They have been charged with money-laundering offences.

If convicted, the latest suspect faces a jail term of up to five years, or a fine, or both.

The director of Singapore's Commercial Affairs Department, Mr David Chew, said that Singapore police will work closely with foreign law enforcement agencies to clamp down on transnational criminal networks.

The Singapore police also advised members of the public to take precautions when they receive unsolicited calls to surrender money, in order to avoid criminal investigations.

The precautions include ignoring such calls and callers' instructions as well as refraining from giving out personal information and bank details over websites or to phone callers.

Members of the public can seek scam-related advice by calling the anti-scam helpline on 1800-722-6688 or visiting

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 09, 2019, with the headline Fourth Malaysian man arrested over $5.4m scam. Subscribe