SINGAPORE: A 25-year-old man is being investigated for allegedly lodging a false police report after falling for a credit-for-sex scam, said police on Wednesday (Jul 24).
Police said they received a report by the man on Tuesday, which stated that he had been extorted by three men.
"The man claimed he had accidentally bumped into one of the three men, and the trio had demanded that he transfer Alipay credits to compensate for the injuries," said police in the media release.
He then claimed to have purchased and sent the serial codes of the Alipay credits worth S$9,200 to a specified email address, police added.
Over the course of investigations, officers detected several inconsistencies in the man's report, and eventually uncovered that he was a victim of a credit-for-sex scam.
"It is believed that he had received an unsolicited offer for sex services from a woman on an online dating application, and was told to make a deposit via Alipay credits to book her services," said police.
The man purchased at least S$9,200 worth of Alipay credits at an AXS machine before sending the serial codes of the credits to the scammer.
He only realised that he was scammed when he did not get to meet the woman.
To account for the lost money to his partner, the man decided to lodge the false police report.
Investigations against the man are ongoing.
Anyone found guilty of deliberately providing false information to a public servant can be jailed for up to a year, fined up to S$5,000, or both.
Police said that credit-for-sex scams have been on the rise, with 533 such reports last year involving S$1.5 million.
This is an increase from the 414 cases reported in 2017, which involved S$1 million.