Someone wrote to us about an iPhone investment scam and would like to warn others

Someone wrote to us about how he, together with four others fell for an “iPhone investment scam” and want us to publish the story to warn others.

We’ll put out the facts of the story and we’lll let you decide for yourself. 

The “scam” started when the letter writer, met the alleged scammer (let’s call him W). 

The TL;DR short story: Dunno whether this one really scam, or just bad business decision.

Anyway, the letter writer said that W claimed to be a director working for OCBC. The letter writer attached a scan of the name card and said: “What is frightening is that this guy dare to produce an OCBC name card! How often can someone in his 30s be a director in a big bank? If you noticed some details on his name card, the address does not tally the REAL OCBC and there is no such address exist either.”

However, the address is legit and it isn’t really out of the ordinary that a person in their 30s or even 20s is a President, Vice President or Director with a bank. Banks are known for their over inflated titles. 

The writer then goes on to allege that W’s car (a BMW, surprise surprise) and service suite apartment are borrowed and not his. 

However, you must be wondering by now what this scam is about. 

There is no detail about this in the writer’s letter, except this scan of a simple contract. We can only understand it as a buying and selling of iPhones. A profit of $150 was supposed to be made payable to them by an pre-agreed date. 

The contract is attached at the end of this article for your review.

When the time has come for payment of profit, W would then make excuses to deny payment. Even going as far as saying his mother is in hospital, died and siblings fighting over inheritance. 

The writer has also provided us pictures of his girlfriend and allege that she is collaborating with him.

We asked a lawyer to analyse this and perhaps advice what our letter writer has recourse to. This is what he says:

“It doesn’t really sound like a scam. A scam is a fraudulent scheme designed to cheat someone. In this story, it doesn’t sound like anything fraudulent has taken place. There were goods involved, a contract was written and in it contains all the elements of a business transaction.”

“Neither is there a crime, which is why the police will be of no help to him. The issue is non-payment and the letter writer has recourse to action in a court of law. He may want to start with a claim at the Small Claims Tribunal.”

“It would not be advisable for him to send pictures of W’s identity card, photographs and allege that he is a scam artist when this fact is not yet proven, otherwise he may run into claims of defamation by W.”

 

Baey Yandao

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