NK defectors victimized in fraud scheme
By Kim Bo-eun
Police have launched a crackdown on con artists trying to swindle North Korean defectors out of huge sums of money.
A defector reported that he was lured into investing 30 million won in a real estate development project in Guangxi Province, China, under the false promise of a 10-percent return per month, the police said Friday.
Investigators said that the fraud is a pyramid-style scheme in which investors are told they can get additional payments every time they recruit other people.
It is thought that more than a dozen defectors have been swindled.
The scheme is convincing enough to even attract North Korean defectors to a site in China, offering flights and accommodation expenses, claiming investors have earned tens of billions of won through investments.
“They avoided making contracts by telling the defectors that they need to invest under borrowed Chinese names as China strictly regulates the flow of capital in and out of the country,” police said