The Guangming police recently busted a gang allegedly involved in a scam related to coffee bean trade, arresting seven suspects. In July and August alone there were more than 700 victims of the coffee scam, the Southern Metropolis Daily reported Tuesday.
According to the police, the gang first hired models to take photos and videos for publicity and designated a specific member to register accounts on dating apps. After the member successfully befriended someone on the apps, she would talk with the customer according to a “script,” pretending to be selling coffee beans.
In order to impress the customer, the gang member would send photos and videos of the models, and later asked the customer to send her “red packets” for various reasons.
A man surnamed Xu was one of the victims. Xu told the police that he befriended a woman identified as Miaomiao on a dating app earlier this year and fell in love with her after a period of time.
Miaomiao agreed to become his girlfriend before repeatedly asking him to transfer her money to show his love. However, Miaomiao later stopped talking to Xu and blocked him on the app.
On Aug. 1, Xu reported the case to Guangming police.
According to the clues provided by Xu, the police found that Miaomiao’s personal information on the app was false, and that the suspect had operated in a professional way, leaving few clues for the police to track her down.
The police discovered that Miaomiao had befriended Xu under the guise of selling coffee beans. Following this clue, the police gradually uncovered the criminal gang.
The police arrested two female suspects in Huizhou on Aug. 31. During an interrogation, one of the suspects surnamed Chen said the company had 40 employees and each of them was subject to a clear division of labor.
Chen was responsible for sending out coffee beans from the warehouse, according to the information provided by the “salesmen,” while the other suspect surnamed Fang was in charge of managing the dating app accounts.
On Sept. 1, the gang was undone in a commercial building in Huizhou. The police busted seven suspects and seized nine mobile phones, two USB flash disks, five bank cards and 68 computers.
The seven suspects pleaded guilty to fraud and have been detained by the Guangming police. The case is under further investigation.