Scratch and Win… NOT!

When Sean was met by an unidentified man at the Bukit Jalil LRT station, little did he realized that he is a soon-to-be victim of a scratch and win scam.

Relating the incident, Sean (not his real name) said he was ‘sweet talked’ and tricked by the unidentified
man into participating in a lucky draw and subsequently cheating him off his RM50,000  hard earned money.

At first Sean was told that he had won the grand prize of the lucky draw – a car and some branded electrical appliances. In the spur of the moment he followed the unidentified man to his office to ‘settle’ some payment issue.

According to Sean, he felt like he was in trance and followed every instruction given by the man without
realizing anything.

By the time Sean came to his senses, his hard earned RM50,000 has been withdrawn from his bank account.

“In fact, we had a total of 52 cases last year and for the past 10 years, we’ve gone through about 50 press conferences exposing the syndicates and educating the public. Still, there are some individuals stupid enough to fall for the trap,” commented Datuk Michael Chong, Head of the MCA Public Services and Complaints Department, when being contacted recently.

“I wouldn’t use the term victim in this case, but rather stupidity because they never learn. As of today, my department has received 41 cases, two of which included foreigners. This is nothing new, actually. We’ve declared war on them and it appears that we’ve lost the battle to them. You won’t be surprised when you see lawyers representing the syndicate come up and defend their “clients.”

“The government can’t do much and the authorities can’t place any action against them, because then the lawyers will argue that it’s business’ nature to sell with the people buying. You can just walk off if you’re not interested. No one is forcing you, so-to-speak.”

“Of course there are cases where we actually took it to the court and won. I can say that nine out of ten cases that we bring to court would suceed,” added Chong again.

Scratch and win scam is not something new, as the number of people falling prey to this fraud tactics seems endless despite the countless newspaper reports and awareness campaigns carried out by authorities.

Komunitikini did an investigation on this scammers by scouting their usual hangout places, Midvalley KTM station and Bukit Jalil LRT station.

Upon observation we realized that the gang’s tactic is to approach the female passengers or passengers traveling alone and entice them to take part in the contest. If their ‘sweet talk’ fails, they become persuasive and starts convincing the victims with unbelievable offer.

The reporter then approached  one of the member to engage in a short conversation, but they felt suspicious and walked away.

According to the Bukit Jalil LRT station master, he can’t do much about ‘them’ being at the station. He had even tried calling the police but by the time they arrive, the group has already left.

Meanwhile, a police constable, who was doing his rounds at the Mid Valley KTM station said, they are aware of what the group is doing but they can’t do much about their presence there as they do not cause any public disturbance.

At times the group can sense that the police are approaching and they will leave by the time the police arrive said the constable, whom later asked the group to leave.

A member of the group later approached the reporter in the pretext of coaxing her to participate in the lucky draw. One of them asked the reporter to pick a card and in return he will pose for picture for free.

The reporter declined and walked off.