SINGAPORE: A total of 163 men and 73 women are being investigated for their suspected involvement in scams where victims lost more than S$6.1 million, said the police on Friday (Nov 19).
The 236 suspects, aged 14 to 78, are believed to be involved in more than 770 scam cases as scammers or money mules.
The scams consisted mainly of Internet love scams, e-commerce scams, China and government officials impersonation scams, as well as investment, job, business email and loan scams.
Those being investigated were identified following a two-week operation by the Commercial Affairs Department and the seven police land divisions between Nov 6 and Nov 18.
"The suspects are being investigated for the alleged offences of cheating, money laundering or providing payment services without a licence," said the police.
Those found guilty of cheating face up to 10 years' jail and a fine. Those convicted of money laundering may be jailed for up to 10 years, fined of up to S$500,000, or both.
The offence of carrying on a business of providing any type of payment service in Singapore without a licence carries a fine of up to S$125,000, a jail term of up to three years, or both.
"The police take a serious stance against any person who may be involved in scams, and perpetrators will be dealt with in accordance with the law.
"To avoid being an accomplice to crimes, members of the public should always reject requests by others to use your bank account or mobile lines as you will be held accountable if these are linked to crimes," said the police.