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Friday, June 21, 2024
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PRC TOURIST JAILED: FAKES “KIDNAP” TO GET MONEY FROM RELATIVE

A Chinese tourist, Liu Changjian, was recently sentenced to 10 weeks’ jail after attempting to deceive his aunt into paying a ransom of RMB30,000 (S$5,726) by faking his own kidnapping. Liu had accrued S$30,000 in debts after gambling at Marina Bay Sands (MBS) on a near-daily basis within the span of a week.

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Liu had arrived in Singapore on March 1 and had gambled almost every day at the MBS casino until he lost S$30,000. He needed to repay a friend that he had borrowed money from, so he created a fake kidnapping scenario to extract money from his aunt.

On March 7, Liu messaged his aunt using a spare WeChat account, pretending to be an unknown person called “Brother Tiger”. He sent her a picture of his passport to trick her into thinking that his life was in danger and demanded a ransom of RMB30,000 by 12pm the next day.

However, Liu’s aunt did not respond to the texts, so he sent a follow-up text at around 5:14pm the next day, stating that Liu Changjian would be locked up for two months if “Brother Tiger” did not receive the money.

Liu’s plan was foiled when his aunt informed his father about the ransom demand, who then called the Singapore Police Force (SPF) from China to report the “kidnapping”. Within three hours of the report, officers located Liu in the vicinity of Marina Bay, where he was found safe and sound.

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Police seized Liu’s mobile devices for investigation, and he later pleaded guilty to one charge of attempted cheating.

This incident highlights the dangers of gambling addiction and the desperate measures some individuals may take to repay their debts. It is important to seek help and support if one is struggling with gambling addiction, and to avoid resorting to illegal or unethical means to repay debts.

Moreover, this incident also underscores the importance of vigilance and prompt reporting of suspicious activities to the authorities. The quick response and action taken by the SPF in this case helped to ensure the safety and well-being of the individual involved.

In conclusion, this incident serves as a cautionary tale of the consequences of gambling addiction and the importance of responsible gambling, as well as the need for vigilance and prompt reporting of suspicious activities to the authorities.

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