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Thursday, December 29, 2016

Terengganu umrah package scam involving RM14m exposed



The police have exposed an 'umrah' (minor haj) package fraud by an entity in Terengganu involving losses estimated at RM14.2 million, and arrested two people.
Terengganu police chief Rosli Ab Rahman said today the two people, one a director and the other an accountant, were being held under remand for four days from Tuesday.
He said 4,800 people, many of them teachers, had fallen victim to the fraud which was being investigated under Section 420 of the Penal Code for cheating.
Several officials of the Terengganu Education Department would be called to assist in the investigation, he added.
Rosli told a press conference that police raided a premises in Besut and recovered, among others, 18 passports, a laptop computer, two handphones and several documents.
An inspection of a bank account of the entity revealed that RM14.2 million had been deposited in it, he said.
The check also showed that money had been withdrawn in cash and by cheques but it could not be ascertained on what it was spent, he added.
The entity had made use of the Terengganu Education Department by issuing offer letters to draw teachers in the state to take the umrah package, he said.

The package cost RM6,990 per person but a participant had to pay only RM3,000 and the rest was to be financed by a sponsor company, he added.
Rosli said the police had so far received 47 reports from the victims of the fraud and one report from a tour agency.
He said a check showed that the entity was not registered under the Registrar of Societies or the Companies Commission of Malaysia.

Rosli did not rule out the possibility of the money having been used for investment.

A special team had been set up to conduct a thorough investigation of the case, he said.

He said the police were tracing the flow of money from the account of the entity which had 10 subsidiaries, of which only seven were registered with the Companies Commission of Malaysia.

Rosli said the entity had been offering the umrah packages from June to October this year and had often postponed the umrah dates.

He also said that the director had lodged three police reports claiming intimidation and threats to harm him.
- Bernama

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