Man swindled for over $20,000 in one-night-stand Telegram group

By Duc Hung   November 11, 2023 | 11:00 pm PT
Man swindled for over $20,000 in one-night-stand Telegram group
The Telegram messaging app logo is seen on a website in Singapore Nov. 19, 2015. Photo by Reuters/Thomas White
A man in central Nghe An Province said he was swindled over VND500 million ($20,555) after joining a Telegram group for casual sex.

The Nghe An police on Saturday said the 33-year-old man went on social media on Nov. 6 looking for one-night stands, and was introduced to a Telegram group called "Thien Duong My Nhan" (Beauty Heaven).

The man was then persuaded by the administrators of the group to do "missions" for a VIP membership, which would get him "discounted services while having fun with the beauties."

After completing his first mission, the man sent VND150,000 as the initial membership fee, and the money was then returned to him, plus a 20% bonus. He was then told to do more missions for bigger bonuses.

The man told the police he completed five more missions, having transferred VND560 million to the administrators, but failed to get more bonuses or contact with any women as the group had advertised.

He suspected he was tricked, and so requested the administrator refund his money, and the administrator told him that if he sent them VND450 million, his VND560 million would be returned to him, plus bonuses.

The man realized the group was a scam and reported the matter to the police.

A representative of the Nghe An police's criminal division said there are many internet groups aimed at single people looking for partners, but are actually scams.

They entice members to send initial fees, and then make them drop their guard by sending them bonus money afterwards.

As the money spent keeps getting higher, they continue to tell their victims that more money is needed for their so-called VIP membership.

"Maybe victims are mentally manipulated and keep sending the money, hoping to make up for the losses. Once they realize they are being scammed, it is already too late," the representative said, adding that many victims do not go to the police out of shame.

The scammers are mostly based overseas, making it next to impossible to gain back the lost money, police said.

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