crime

70-year-old woman robbed of Y43 million in telephone scam

35 Comments

Police say that a 70-year-old Ibaraki woman was robbed of 43 million yen by a man claiming that her son was in trouble.

The woman, the manager of a hairdresser establishment in Tsuchiura, told police that she received a phone call in May from a man posing as a representative of the Ministry of Finance, TBS reported. According to police, the man asked her to repay funds that he claimed her son had lost on a bad investment.

The fraudster also allegedly claimed that bank transfer was not an option and that she would have to send the money in cash. Investigators say the woman divided the payment into 15 packages and sent them to two addresses in Tokyo, according to TBS.

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35 Comments
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sent them to two addresses in Tokyo... Very sad story that old ladies fall for this showing the love for their kids... I hope they nail the SOBs and plaster them all over the media. Cops already have a hot lead.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Why didn't she call her son to confirm? Not to bright are we?

12 ( +14 / -2 )

I know we should blame the criminal, not the victim, but after seeing and hearing similar cases about 10 million times on TV, newspaper, how anyone can still fall for this is beyond me.

12 ( +15 / -3 )

Robbed? More like she was defrauded.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I concur Suzuki, this is de ja vu all year every year.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Sendng money through the mail usually entails using special enveloppes which should be easy enough to trace. It does make one wonder though about the "mother-son" relationship! Maybe she didn't know her son well enough or maybe she did and thought he was really capable of such an act? Anyway, with all the other recent cases it does seem strange she should fall for this increasingly "popular" ruse...

4 ( +4 / -0 )

How many cases before people start to realise what is going on? Seems to be the same story every few weeks and yet another person just goes ahead and gives away a serious amount of money immediately after... The elderly need to stop burying their heads in the sand and realise they are all potential victims of an easily avoidable scheme!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

After all of the campaigns and PSA's informing the elderly of frauds like this, she has no one to blame but herself for not just calling her son.... Why are people so afraid of just talking to each other? One phone call would have avoided this whole situation.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It is horrible that this happened. It happens too much to the elderly... but I do agree, she should have contacted her son to see what was up.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Why are people so afraid of just talking to each other?

Hayashi-san, I think you just summed up one of the most significant reasons this society is dysfunctional.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

I do not want that woman on my team....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Where have all the money gone? Gone to scammers, everyone. Oh, when will they ever learn? Oh, when will they ever learn?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

yes, hide suzuki, and others-

But, with the elderly, there can be so many factors, like alzheimers, dementia, other illness, an impending sense of death and a wish to act fast to right wrongs, etc. Furthermore, maybe the caller researched/ knew her son, ad the story about bad investments was plausible. I heard that these guys started researching their targets after the first wave of " ore ore sagi".

Or, maybe she was an idiot. We'll never know.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Where was the bank? I don't get why the banks don't first check with both parties and make sure everyone has been contacted first. Given the amount she would have had to have made either one large withdrawal or multiple withdrawals. It would have warranted a question and they could have then confirmed it with the son. The reason why never would have been needed.

It would have caught this as the defrauded person often forgets to just call the son/daughter. In an ever increasing elderly population the services have to start doing this. Also brown bagging cash? There were many red flags here.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I know I will get thumbed down and cursed and etc..but maybe, just maybe dishing out the DEATH PENALTY to these evil criminals, could this help reduce this type of crime?? Maybe if Japan has too many qualms, send them off to China, where our Chinese amigos do not seem to have many qualms about using the death penalty.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Y'know, I have to say, I find the "She got what she deserved" attitude on this thread a bit disturbing. I guess it's a sign of the times, but are you really that uncompassionate? You going to say the same about your own grandmother, when the time comes? She is an old lady, FFS. Who knows why she went for the scam, but whatever you do don't absolve the criminals of full responsibility for this.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

43 million. Wow, I can't even imagine having that much loose cash lying around! You'd think after all the campaigns the police have been promoting, how much in the news these types of cases have been reported, it would start sinking in that you double check first before sending/ transferring cash to anyone. A few years ago, I could understand it but now....

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

And I forgot to add that you'd think immediate family would be a bit more proactive about educating/ protecting elderly family members from this type of crime.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Drag all her family in for the 10 day questioning I bet the police will get a confession and a 99% conviction on all of them .

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Elderly people are very difficult to protect from this sort of thing. Those who state that it was in some way her fault are far more foolish that the lady in question was. 73 is not really that old, so I expect she is suffering some kind of mental decline as well.

However, we have to question how she got the money. Either it was at the bank, in which case staff should have been far more careful about handing out that much without asking questions. If it was laying around in cash, then there are other questions to ask.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I agree with Tamarama, "She got what she deserved." How can anyone be this dumb/naive? It's staggering.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Duke - It IS staggering. She made the 15 payments over the period May 25th to June 22nd. On June 28th she couldn't contact the other party and realized she'd been conned. They had told her her son had suffered damage in an investment into shrimp farming.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is not just a Japanese problem. They scam elderly victims all over the world using similar tactics. The only reason it works so well is because many parents are scared and they are too eager to help their kids or grand kids.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I agree with Tamarama, "She got what she deserved." How can anyone be this dumb/naive? It's staggering.

Nice....

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

An aging population will continue to supply plenty of targets for the money fraud scams. In spite of all the warnings, to the joy of the fraudsters, there still exists a segment of society that is not tuned in and is not aware of the posters at banks, ATMs, post offices, etc. informing the public of the frauds that have been going on for god knows how long.

I hope they nail the SOBs and plaster them all over the media

I hope they plaster them all over [feel free to finish this sentence]

They had told her her son had suffered damage in an investment into shrimp farming.

And the son could not be contacted for the whole month she was transferring money? A very special family relation must have pre-existed. Who knows, maybe the mystery son was in on it himself? Just guessing for lack of more info.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This is not just a Japanese problem. They scam elderly victims all over the world using similar tactics. The only reason it works so well is because many parents are scared and they are too eager to help their kids or grand kids.

It proves so many parents are out of touch with their (grand)children.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

a-so

I agree as I said in my prev post about possible mental decline, strong desire to help kids.

"having cash lying around" --for ppl of a certain generation, putting money into mattresses etc. was seen as much safer than a bank. it is not that uncommon for elderly to have all their savings or a certain amt of it lying about.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Common sense anyone? I never get how easily these people get fooled.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

lmfaol an idiot wont be conned like this. in cash right!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

unbelievable! What I don't understand, how could you believe someone who is asking for that much money over the PHONE? For that kind of money, I would expect an in person visit with some nice rice crackers and alot of explanation. Hope they find them darn perpetrators. I received a similiar fraudulent call, couldn't believe it, but played the pranksters like I was going to pay and sent them on a wild goose chase.....suckers!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

But, with the elderly, there can be so many factors, like alzheimers, dementia, other illness, an impending sense of death and a wish to act fast to right wrongs, etc. Furthermore, maybe the caller researched/ knew her son, ad the story about bad investments was plausible. I heard that these guys started researching their targets after the first wave of " ore ore sagi".

All the more reason why her family should have been better in touch with her or vice versa. And I must add, one phone call is all it takes to confirm the story.

Y'know, I have to say, I find the "She got what she deserved" attitude on this thread a bit disturbing. I guess it's a sign of the times, but are you really that uncompassionate? You going to say the same about your own grandmother, when the time comes? She is an old lady, FFS. Who knows why she went for the scam, but whatever you do don't absolve the criminals of full responsibility for this.

No. No. No one deserves this, and that's not what people are criticizing her for. She is the victim, and there is no argument about that. However, you've got to be pretty damn naive for you to give up so much cash without as much as calling the son to confirm it. No wire transfers, send money through the mail?...C'MON!!!!! HELLO??!?! RED FLAG!!! What legit company or person asks to send money through the MAIL???

0 ( +0 / -0 )

too funny, cant be sorry for the victim here really, Darwin at work

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Robbed? More like she was defrauded.

Exactly. To the JT translator: Robbery is defined as "the felonious taking of personal property from someone using force or the threat of force." No force here, just clever thieves and a vulnerable woman who apparently didn't even bother to call her own son to confrim.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I don't feel that it is entirely this woman's responsibility for being conned regardless of how often this happens. Why aren't the children/grandchildren properly warning their parents/grandparents about this. Many of these elderly most likely do not make it out and about all that much to see or hear about these scams. Their children are far more likely to know of the existence of the scams and should take more action to inform them about it. Something as simple as putting notes besides the telephone in a well visible place that says "Do not believe people asking for money" or "Confirm with us about someone asking for money" should be quite sufficient I would figure.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Something as simple as putting notes besides the telephone in a well visible place that says "Do not believe people asking for money" or "Confirm with us about someone asking for money" should be quite sufficient I would figure

lol I'd like to see anyone try that with my 85-year-old MiL. Putting up notes around the house suggesting she isn't all there and/or can't handle her own money would go down like a lead balloon and put the perpetrator well and truly in the dog house. When we call her we have to give our name, address and date of birth before she changes from a suspicious old lady to the obaachan we know and love.

My daughter used to be in a position to go around old people's homes, day centres, etc., telling the oldies about the dangers of Ore Ore Sagi, and she says that in many cases it was like talking to a brick wall. Even after she'd explained what it was all about and how it worked, and got the old folk to agree that their children/grandchildren could not get themselves into the kind of scrape that would necessitate Granny coughing up huge wads of instant cash - that there is no such kind of scrape - a goodly number of them remarked at the end that they would still send the money straight away, 'Just in case'.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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