Police arrests two suspects in Philippines for phone scam

By Kuksung Nam, The Readable
Oct. 20, 2022 7:16PM KST

The South Korean police arrested an alleged leader and second in command of a criminal gang based in the Philippines. The suspects were involved in cross-border telephone fraud targeting South Koreans from 2017 to 2021.

The Korean National Police Agency said in a press release on Thursday that the two suspects, who are both in their 30s, were arrested in the Philippines in September and were extradited back to South Korea on October 20.

The police stated that the group impersonated financial officials and tricked victims into transferring money by telling the victims that they could borrow money at much lower interest rates if they changed their mortgage lender. The police investigation shows that over 10.8 billion won ($7 million) was sent to the gang from 562 victims over the past years.

Investigators said that they have arrested 22 of 64 suspected gang members, including the two who arrived in South Korea on Thursday. “The heads of a telephone scam criminal group are living aboard to avoid arrest,” said the Director of Interpol and International Investigative Assistance Division Kang Ki-taek. “We will do our best to capture and extradite the criminal leaders.”


The cover image of this article was designed by Areum Hwang.

Kuksung Nam is a cybersecurity journalist for The Readable. She covers cybersecurity issues in South Korea, including the public and private sectors. Prior to joining The Readable, she worked as a political reporter for one of the top-five local newspapers in South Korea, The Kyeongin Ilbo, where she reported several exclusive stories regarding the misconduct of local government officials. She is currently focused on issues related to anti-fraud, as well as threats and crimes in cyberspace. She is a Korean native who is fluent in English and French, and she is interested in delivering the news to a global audience.