Skyrocketing white-collar crime | The star
White collar crimes such as scams have increased in Johor with losses amounting to over RM158 million in the first five months of the year.
State Police Chief Comm Datuk Kamarul Zaman Mamat said 1,377 commercial crime cases were recorded in Johor from January 1 to May 23, indicating an increase from 1,310 cases in the period corresponding last year.
“Last year, police recorded RM68mil in commercial crime cases. Cheating reports were highest at 1,242 cases, while illegal money lending came second with 66 cases, apart from 32 cases of breach of trust,” he added.
Comm Kamarul Zaman said this after attending a crime awareness dialogue session with industry players and community representatives at Taman Mawar Multipurpose Hall.
He said the breakdown of losses in commercial crime cases this year were cheating (RM139 million), breach of trust (RM18 million), cybercrime (RM545,470), money lending money (RM349,321) and misuse of property (RM49,000).
He urged the public to be vigilant, especially when receiving calls from unknown numbers and people claiming to be law enforcement.
“Their modus operandi is simple; they would pretend to be agents of the police, customs, the Inland Revenue Board or any other government agency to scare off potential victims.
“They usually call their victims on weekends and people should know that government offices are closed on Saturdays and Sundays,” he added.
Comm Kamarul Zaman also said police discovered a Macau scam syndicate, which was recruiting people to become scammers.
He said that this union targets job seekers by offering lucrative salaries through various social media platforms.
“Those who apply for the position will then be brought to a local before being handed over to another group for victims of scams.
“Police discovered this when reports were filed by those who went to interviews in Johor Baru conducted by the union,” he revealed.
Comm Kamarul said following the reports, police had arrested five suspects to help with investigations and were in the process of finding other union members.