Police Hunt Fake US Army Perpetrator in Rp2.4 billion Love Scam
The Greater Metropolitan Regional Police has recently arrested two of the three people suspected of being involved in a love scam case which defrauded an Indonesian citizen of up to Rp.2.4 billion.
The suspects currently in custody are a male foreigner from Nigeria with the initials UT and an Indonesian woman with the initials CS.
The fraud began when the suspect asked the victim, PC, to get acquainted using Instagram and continued their conversation on WhatsApp. The perpetrator told the victim they were a female member of the United States army who wanted to leave the military and settle in Indonesia.
After the communication got intense, the perpetrator was sure that the victim was smitten. Director of Special Criminal Investigation Police Chief Commissioner Auliansyah Lubis believes that the victim was not hypnotised but rather was tempted by the seduction tactics being used on them which led them to believe they were in a committed relationship.
The perpetrator went on to convince the victim to travel to Indonesia in order to get married. For this, they asked for cash totalling US$2 million.
“The suitcase had already left for Indonesia, the money was there. The suspect asked for help, ‘please send me the money first for me to go to Indonesia and for the suitcase to reach Indonesia’,” he said.
The victim continued to send funds up to Rp2.4 billion to the perpetrator via two suspects who had been arrested by the police. These two suspects acted as fund collectors so they have also been arrested by the police in order to pursue the main perpetrator.
“They are the ones who opened the account and accepted the funds. But we haven’t found the main perpetrator who sent the first direct message and made a fuss, so we are still carrying out further investigations,” explained Lubis.
The suspects are charged with article 28 paragraph 1 in conjunction with article 45 paragraph 1 of law number 19 of 2016 concerning amendments to law number 11 of 2007 concerning electronic information and transactions. The criminal faces a maximum of six years in prison or a fine of Rp1 billion. Articles 3, 4, and 5 of the ML law number 8 of 2010 are also applied with a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of Rp10 billion.