Vietnamese woman arrested for colluding with foreigners to swindle peers

By Dam Huy, Thanh Nien News

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Le Thi Phuong Trang at the police station. Photo credit: CAND Le Thi Phuong Trang at the police station. Photo credit: CAND

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Ho Chi Minh City police have arrested a Vietnamese woman for being part of a ring run by some Nigerian and Malaysian men accused of swindling Vietnamese women.

Police said the accused, Le Thi Phuong Trang, 38, joined the gang while living in Malaysia several years ago.

The men would often claim to be rich businessmen and make friends with Vietnamese women on the Internet.

After winning their confidence, they would promise to give the would-be victims valuable gifts. Trang would then pose as an employee of a delivery service or customs and call the women to tell them they had consignments and ask for fees to claim them.

Investigators said Trang had called hundreds of people since March 3, and at least 10 of them paid Trang a total of VND1 billion (US$46,620) of which she got 10 percent.

The racket came to light after a victim, identified only as N of Ho Chi Minh City, complained to the police.

She said after she made friends with a foreign man online and was promised a gift, a woman called her saying someone had sent her a large sum of money without paying tax.

On her instructions, N transferred VND35 million to a bank account. She realized she had been swindled after finding there was no gift.

The police are looking for Trang’s accomplices.

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