Scam artist with over 100 victims arrested by police

Thursday 28 April 2022 5:30am – 

A Deer Park man has been charged overnight following an investigation into an alleged scam involving over 100 victims who were defrauded nearly $300,000 in total.

Brimbank Crime Investigation Unit detectives have been investigating an alleged string of puppy scams, false advertising on online marketplaces and scams where the person claimed to be from the Australian Tax Office or a mobile phone company.

The scams are alleged to have occurred between April 2018 and September 2021, with police identifying 109 victims who lost $295,705 in total.

It’s alleged the man used stolen identities to obtain bank accounts for the victims to transfer money in to.

The 32-year-old man from Deer Park has been charged with obtain property by deception, possess proceeds of crime and use fraudulent document.

He has been remanded to appear at the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court today.

It comes as a reminder for people to delay any purchases until you can see the item, or animal such as a dog, in person.

If you receive a phone call requesting personal information or payment from a person representing themselves as a government agency, do not respond to the request and hang up. Call the agency back through a publicly listed phone number.

Similarly, if you receive a call from someone claiming to be a mobile phone company, requesting you download an application to your phone, hang up. Call the company back on a publicly listed company to check.”

If you believe you have been a victim of an online scam, we encourage people to make a report on the Report Cyber website at www.cyber.gov.au

Anyone with any information in relation to the scam is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential crime report at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au