Lonely single women are being targeted by a gang purporting to be looking for a date only to lure them into buying expensive beauty treatments.
Victims have paid up to HK$200,000 (US$25,780) after meeting the scammers, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.
A woman, surnamed Chan, said she was approached on Facebook by a man who wanted to add her to his friends list.
The man said his account had been hacked and he was looking to add new friends.
Chan, who makes more than HK$30,000 a month, agreed to meet the stranger. Later, she was brought to a beauty center where she was enticed into buying treatments worth HK$200,000.
It was also the last time she saw him.
Other victims, mostly in their thirties, said they lost more than HK$30,000 each.
Sham Shui Po district councilor Yuen Hoi-man said his Democratic Party helped three women who were swindled out of HK$34,000 to HK$200,000, Apple Daily reports.
He said the three were approached by young men who claimed to be university students and purporting to be of a certain religion.
The men suggested a potential love affair with the women.
“He asked me out for tea,” one of the women said. “Then he suggested going for a facial treatment together afterwards.”
Yuen said the men could be working as sales agents for beauty centers, news website hk01.com reports.
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