Nearly 600 Arrested in Asia Swindling Ring

Posted June 10th, 2011 at 10:40 am (UTC-5)
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Taiwan police Friday said nearly 600 people had been arrested across Asia in a joint effort to break up a swindling ring.

Of those arrested in raids Thursday, about 400 were Taiwan citizens and 180 were from mainland China. Arrests were made in Cambodia, mainland China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan and Thailand. In Cambodia, the Ministry of Interior says at least 187 people were arrested there; one is a Vietnamese citizen and the others are Chinese.

Authorities say the suspects used Internet telephone services to call victims and trick them into sending money to online accounts. For instance, some victims were told they owed traffic fines that had to be paid immediately.

It is not clear where the suspects will be tried, but Cambodia said it would deport those it arrested to their home countries.

Taiwan's top police officer, Wang Cho-chiun says his department and mainland China's Ministry of Public Security coordinated on the investigation and arrests.