Three nabbed for illegally redeeming face masks from vending machines

The suspects aged between 38 and 52 were caught for allegedly redeeming more than 160 reusable face masks from vending machines. PHOTO: SINGAPORE POLICE FORCE

SINGAPORE - The police have arrested three people for cheating and redeeming face masks using personal data that have been illegally obtained.

The suspects aged between 38 and 52 were caught for allegedly redeeming more than 160 reusable face masks from vending machines put up by Temasek Foundation after they had illegally accessed the personal information of others.

Based on preliminary investigations, the cases appear to be unrelated.

Between Nov 30 and Dec 5, the police had received separate reports from victims who were unable to collect their government-issued face masks from vending machines.

A check conducted against the system's records showed that the face masks had already been redeemed, said the police in a statement on Wednesday (Dec 16) night.

The first person who was arrested on Monday (Dec 14) was a 38-year-old man who was caught after illegally obtaining personal information to redeem more than 40 face masks from a vending machine along Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10.

The second suspect is a 41 year-old woman who was arrested on Tuesday for unauthorised redemption of more than 60 face masks from a vending machine at Clementi Community Centre.

The third suspect, a 52-year-old man, was arrested on Tuesday after illegally obtaining personal information to redeem more than 60 face masks from a vending machine along Bedok Reservoir Road.

The police identified the suspects with the help of police cameras and closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras fixed in the vending machines.

Police investigations are ongoing.

Cheating carries an imprisonment term of up to 10 years and a fine.

Retaining illegally obtained personal information carries an imprisonment term of up to three years, a fine of up to $10,000, or both.

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