Tutor facing legal woes after letting so-called friend use bank accounts

KUALA LUMPUR: A 36-year-old woman is facing legal woes after her account was used by scammers.

The tutor, who only wanted to be known as Mok, said she gave details of her two bank accounts to a woman she knew as Lee in January 2019.

"Lee said she was having trouble opening a bank account, so I let her use mine.

"I thought we were friends and I trusted her," she told a press conference organised by MCA Public Services and Complaints Department Datuk Seri Michael Chong at Wisma MCA here on Thursday (Aug 18).

ALSO READ: Cops arrest five men in Penang over scammer mule accounts

Mok said she was shocked to discover a few months later that Lee had used her bank accounts to funnel money from scams.

"I checked on my accounts in June 2019 and discovered that both accounts were closed as they were used in scams and had become part of police investigations.

"I discovered that my accounts were connected to various scam cases in Pandan Indah, Ampang and Terengganu.

"I had my statements recorded by the police and was subsequently arrested. I was even charged under Section 420 of the Penal Code (for cheating)," she said.

Mok said she has to attend a court proceeding on Aug 25.

ALSO READ: Cops: Don’t be a mule and accept cash for ATM cards

"I hope people will be careful and not divulge or lend their bank accounts to anyone.

"I am paying the price now for trusting the wrong person," she lamented.

Meanwhile, Chong said he has encountered various cases of bank accounts used by scammers, also known as mule accounts.

"In some cases, the account holders were really oblivious that their accounts were used by scammers.

"However, in other cases, the holders were paid commissions based on the number of times their accounts were used," he said.

Chong said scammers would use the bank accounts of other people to avoid detection.

"Scammers often run away and take all the money from the accounts, leaving the account holders to face legal action," he said.

ALSO READ: Police: Beware of mule account scam

Chong said it was unfortunate that most of the mule account holders were students desperate for money.

"Such account holders are paid RM150 for every transaction when their accounts are used. They would get paid once or twice before the scammers absconded.

"We advise those who lend their accounts to others to block the accounts and lodge police reports as soon as possible.

"Stop giving your banking details to suspicious individuals," he said.

Chong said he was perplexed that scam cases were still happening despite various warnings.

The department's legal advisor Datuk Theng Book said he would assist in advising Mok's lawyer to write to the Attorney General's Chambers to withdraw the cases against her.

"Never divulge bank account details to anyone as scammers are only out to make use of the accounts for their own benefit," he said.

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