Man arrested for suspected love scams; victims cheated of $31,000

Internet love scams have seen at least 384 victims since the start of 2022. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Using a fictitious online persona, a 26-year-old man befriended several victims on various dating platforms before allegedly cheating them of more than $31,000.

The police said in a statement on Friday (May 20) that officers from Bedok Police Division arrested him on Tuesday for his suspected involvement in a series of Internet love scams after receiving multiple reports from the victims, made between May 11 and May 13.

Follow-up investigations were carried out to establish the man's identity.

The statement added that the man allegedly used the money transferred to him by the victims to repay his credit card bills and for his daily expenses.

If found guilty of cheating, he may face up to 10 years in jail and a fine.

The police said investigations are ongoing.

This is the latest incident in a series of similar Internet love scams, which has seen at least 384 victims since the start of 2022 losing at least $15 million to the crooks.

This type of scam is on the rise, with 822 cases reported in 2020, more than 13 times the 62 reported in 2011.

In April, a joint operation by the police in Singapore and Malaysia took down two transnational love scam syndicates based in Malaysia.

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