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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Romance scammer caught in $9m fraud net

NSW Police Financial Crimes Squad detectives have laid fresh charges against a woman as inquiries continue into a sophisticated romance scam, which was uncovered during a $9 million fraud investigation.

In August 2018, detectives from the State Crime Command’s Financial Crimes Squad established Strike Force McKeon to investigate reports of fraud and money laundering.

In February this year, investigators arrested a 27-year-old Thai woman, who allegedly claimed to be a registered remitter and used social media to advertise inflated rates for exchanging money. She was charged and remains before the courts.

As part of ongoing investigations, Strike Force McKeon detectives uncovered a sophisticated romance scam, where a number of men were allegedly defrauded after connecting with a woman through online dating platforms.

Following extensive investigations, detectives charged the 27-year-old woman with an additional 26 offences relating to the alleged romance scam at Burwood Local Court in May.

Earlier today, investigators laid four additional counts of deal with identification information.

Police will allege in court that the additional charges relate to fraudulent credit card and loan applications.

The woman is now facing a total of 66 charges relating to an alleged $9.7 million fraud and money laundering syndicate, and romance scam relating to three victims.

She remains on remand and is next due to appear at Burwood Local Court on 12 August.

Anyone with information in relation to technology-enabled crime is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.

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