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Scam warning: fake ‘virtual kidnapping’ scam targets Chinese Australians

14 May 2018

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) is warning the public about a complex new international scam targeting the Chinese community in Australia.

The scam involves victims – largely international students – being told they are allegedly implicated in crimes in China. The scammers then coerce the victims into a series of actions and make threats that their families in China will be harmed if they don’t cooperate.

Simultaneously, the victims’ families in China are told by the scammer their family members have been kidnapped and will only be released if a large sum of money is paid. In each case, the scammers communicate with the victims in Mandarin and falsely claim to be Chinese government officials.

Media contact: 
AFP Media (Canberra) (02) 6131 6333