KUALA LUMPUR - A 36-year-old woman's dream of finding love turned sour when she was left pregnant by a "Casanova" who also cheated her mother out of RM91,000 (S$30,500).
Vanessa Ho from Simpang Renggam, Johor said she met the "Casanova" - a 40-year-old known as Looi - through a mobile phone app and moved to Kuala Lumpur with him last February.
She said she found out she was pregnant a month later and Looi promised to marry her as soon as possible.
However, in April, the man claimed he was facing financial difficulties and approached Ho's 74-year-old mother, who then lent him RM76,000.
Looi later asked Ho to move back to Johor, and took her mother's ATM card to withdraw a further RM15,000.
Ho added that Looi issued a couple of cheques to "return" her mother's money and made up excuses when they bounced, before disappearing four days after the couple's daughter was born in December.
"I always suspected he may not be trustworthy, but when I wanted to break up with him, I found out I was already pregnant," said Ho at a press conference in Wisma MCA on Thursday (Jan 25).
She added that she later received a visit from debt collectors who claimed that Looi owed them RM215,000, adding that the debt collectors revealed that the man had also used the addresses of two other women in Penang and Johor for his loans.
"However, my mother still believes that he will come back and return her money," added Ho, who said that she wants to prevent more victims from being duped by his charms.
Meanwhile, MCA Public Services and Complaints Department head Datuk Seri Michael Chong said the modus operandi of "Casanovas" was to strike up friendships with women and reel them in by telling them sad life stories.
Chong said that he had to deal with 20 similar cases last year.
"I want ladies to be careful of all these sweet talkers. We have received similar complaints from three ladies this month," said Chong.