Two arrested for cheating elderly of savings and jewellery

SINGAPORE - Police have arrested a man and a woman believed to have cheated two elderly victims of savings and jewellery.

Between November 2013 and December 2013, police received reports from two elderly victims that they were conned into parting with their life savings amounting to $420,000 and a number of gold jewellery valued at $37,550 at People's Park Complex in Chinatown.

Investigations revealed that 51-year-old female suspect had approached the victims on separate occasions and told them that one of their children was sick, said the police in a statement. She requested victims' assistance to get a medium to conduct prayers to cure their children. The 46-year-old male suspect would join in their conversation to convince the victims accordingly.

Together, the duo, who are Chinese nationals, would convince the victims that they were facing some misfortune and in order to ward off the evil spirits and bad luck, they were to bring all their valuables to be blessed. During the prayer sessions, the victims were told to place their valuables in a bag and to close their eyes during the prayer ceremonies. Thereafter, the suspects returned the bags to the victims and told them to meet them again on another day. When the victims returned home, they realised that their money and jewellery were replaced with newspapers and water bottles.

Police arrested the couple at Changi Airport on March 9.

The suspects will be charged in Court for the offence of Cheating with Conspiracy under Section 420 read with Section 109 of the Penal Code, Chapter 224. Any person found guilty for the offence of Cheating shall be punished with an imprisonment for a term which may extend to 10 years and shall also be liable to a fine.