ALOR STAR: We have heard it all before. A local woman "meets" a foreign man in an Internet chatroom.
"Love" blossoms between them and then the "bad man" absconds with his Malaysian lover's money -- in many cases, her life savings or large amounts borrowed from relatives and friends.
Such was the case with a local woman who lost most of her RM50,000 savings to a confidence trickster she had befriended through one of the Internet chatrooms.
Customs Department assistant director-general Datuk Md Hassim Pardi said yesterday the victim had alleged that the man, claiming to be from the Middle East, had asked her to help settle a RM50,000 compound fine.
The fine was allegedly imposed on the man's agent after he was detained by Customs officers for carrying about RM3.4 million in American dollars at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport last month.
"Believing in the foreigner's promise that part of the money was for her to start a business, she settled the compound fine, but not with the department.
"It was done through a third party whom her foreign friend had sent to meet her.
"The RM50,000 was supposed to pay off my men so that the agent could be released.
"She handed over the money and never heard from her foreign chat friend again."
He said this was not the first case involving the department.
"The victim, at her wit's end over the missing 'agent' and her money and chat friend, contacted us.
"We have reminded the public about such scams on numerous occasions but we still find many Malaysians, mostly women, falling victim." -- NST
"We have reminded the public about such scams...."; this is so cliché.
How can you remind people when people have their own mind to think what is good or bad for them. Futhermore, how can you not tell someone not to fall head over heels over somebody that they thought might be the right one for them. The one that might bring them better pastures in life?
Perhaps it was rather do or die kind of thing in this lady case, besides being stupid of course.
She might thought that if she didn't do it, she might miss one good opportunity promised by the conman, so that is why she ever so willingly took all her life saving and hand it over to the Middle east-internet-boyfriend so casually.
Basically it was part gamble, part infatuation and major stupidity.