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SPVM Arrests Three Suspects in $80,000 Fraud Scheme

18 october 2018

Investigators from the Section des crimes économiques of the Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM), in collaboration with patrol officers from neighbourhood police station 5, arrested three suspects involved in an $80,000 fraud scheme. Jinlin Zhong, Chunsheng Zhong and Jin Shui Xie appeared on September 14, 2018 on charges of conspiracy, fraud over $5,000, and use and possession of a forged document.

At the beginning of September 2018, the suspects went to a restaurant claiming that they were foreign workers on contract for a few months and that they were looking for a restaurant that would provide them with meals. The victim who owns the restaurant spoke Mandarin and, because she has the same national origin as the suspects, trust and complicity were established between them. A few days later, the suspects returned to the victim’s restaurant and told her that they found gold nuggets and small statues in an ancient Chinese testament while working in the ground. They explained to the victim that they absolutely needed to sell them before returning to China since they cannot bring these treasures back home. This discovery also had to remain secret. To show their good faith, they then gave the victim a real gold nugget and asked her to have it analyzed, which she did. It was indeed gold. The suspects first estimated the value of these findings at $40,000, but they constantly increased the amount and asked for up to $80,000. The suspects then returned to the restaurant every day to insist on a reply from the victim, claiming that the transaction had to be completed as quickly as possible.

The victim was sceptical and, after some research, she realized that this was the same fraud scheme used in recent events in Western Canada and the United States. The victim contacted her neighbourhood police station and did not give the money to the suspects. Moreover, after carrying out analyses, the so-called gold treasures consisted only of zinc and copper and their value was estimated at only $50 for the entire lot. The three suspects, Jinlin Zhong, 45, Chunsheng Zhong, 56, and Jin Shui Xie, 49, were born in China and speak Mandarin.

Here are some relevant prevention tips to avoid becoming a victim of such fraud.

- Be vigilant in certain situations; fraudsters usually try to earn your trust to reach their goal.
- Beware when you are told that you should not tell anyone and that the sale should remain secret.
- If you are pressured to complete the transaction quickly, it is probably fraudulent.
- If an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is. Money isn’t earned that easily.

Anyone with additional information regarding this event or this type of fraud can contact Info-Crime Montréal at 514-393-1133 or online. The information will be treated anonymously and confidentially.

 

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For more information:
Relations Officer on Duty
Communications Division
Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM)
514-280-2777


Ville de montréal