Woman receives an empty box, paying 1.66m yuan to buy face masks


A woman who spent some 1.66m yuan buying face masks during the coronavirus outbreak has received an empty box sent by suspected online fraudsters.

The 27-year-old resident of China, known by her surname Gao, was hoping to purchase the sought-after goods and then sell them on for profit during the health crisis.

Police have detained five people in relation to the case and retrieved Ms Gao's money.

Ms Gao, who lives in the central province of Henan, described the distressing experience to Henan Urban Channel. 

According to the station, Ms Gao, a resident of Xinmi city, has run a shop on social media platform WeChat for about five years and mainly sells beauty products.

After the novel coronavirus broke out, she decided to acquire face masks to sell on.

She posted a message on WeChat looking for suppliers and one self-proclaimed retailer got in touch with her, claiming to have a large number of masks at a cheap price.

Delighted by the offer, Ms Gao transferred more than 1.66 million yuan to the 'dealer' in the next four days and began to wait for her stock.

But to her surprise, when she received the parcel, it turned out to be an empty box. She called the police immediately.

Xinmi police set up a special team to investigate the case. 

According to a police statement, officers discovered that the so-called face mask supplier was run by five people who live in the provinces of Xinjiang and Fujian.

After three days of on-site investigation, Xinmi police detained four of the suspects in their headquarters and transferred them to Henan.

Those suspects were placed under quarantine as soon as they reached the provincial capital, Zhenzhou.

Meanwhile, officers stayed in close contact with the family members of the fifth suspect, Zhang, hoping to find out where the individual was.

On February 21, Zhang's relatives called the police and expressed the intention to confess on behalf of Zhang.

Officers then travelled to Fujian again to detain Zhang. They also retrieved Ms Gao's money.

All five of them were detained on suspicion of online fraud.

Source: https://www.dailymail.co.uk

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