Johor police bust syndicate scamming telcos of over RM8m

Johor Police Chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay shows a flow chart of the syndicate’s modus operandi during a press conference at the Johor Contingent Police Headquarters, September 9, 2021. — Bernama pic
Johor Police Chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay shows a flow chart of the syndicate’s modus operandi during a press conference at the Johor Contingent Police Headquarters, September 9, 2021. — Bernama pic

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JOHOR BARU, Sept 9 — Johor police have crippled a syndicate targeting telecommunications companies following a series of arrest of mule account holders and syndicate members around Iskandar Puteri last Wednesday.

Johor police chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said the telecommuncations companies had suffered over RM8.6 million in losses to the syndicate.

He said the raids started at 12.30pm and ended at 11.30pm, with 14 syndicate members comprising 10 men and four local women aged between 19 and 38 years detained.

Police also confiscated 24 mobile phones of different brands, 24 ATM bank cards, a laptop and a tablet believed to be used by the syndicate members.

“The syndicate which had been active since early last year had bought mule accounts for the purpose of registering online package purchases and mobile phones.

“The syndicate also used false documents like pay slips and employers’ letters issued by the same syndicate to deceive the telecommunications companies.

“Once the registration and identity of the mule account owner have been confirmed by the telco, the syndicate will make payments using the credit cards of other individuals before the registered phone and package are handed to a syndicate member,” he told the media today.

According to him, with each successful transaction, the mule account owner would receive RM350 while the agent who managed to recruit the mule account holder would be rewarded RM150.

Ayob Khan said the telecommunications companies realised that they had been scammed when the credit card payments registered during the package purchases were rejected by the banks.

He said checks with the telecommunications companies confirmed that they had suffered losses of more than RM8.6 million.

He added that this was Johor police’s first success in uncovering a mobile phone package scam.

He said all those detained were being remanded and investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code which provides for imprisonment of up to 10 years and liable to whipping and a fine.

Ayob Khan also said that Johor police were now tracking down the syndicate leader known as Tan Boon Han, 38, whose last address was in Kampar, Perak, as well as Wong King An, 27, and The Chin How, 38, identified as Tan’s right-hand men.

He also urged the public with information on the suspects to contact ASP Timmy Anak Aheng, the intelligence/operations officer from the Commercial Crime Investigation Department (JSJK), Johor contingent police headquarters at 019-8773728 or the JSJK hotline at 013-21111222. — Bernama

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