Women arrested for bogus agency operations

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Customs authorities. Photos from HK Customs

Hong Kong Customs authorities arrested two women who tricked around eight Filipina domestic workers into paying them as much as $180,000 with a promise that their relatives and friends will be given jobs in the special administrative region and also in Macau.

Superintendent Suzette Ip said on March 17 that the two saleswomen presented themselves as personnel from employment agencies. However, in a special operation codenamed “Phantom,” the Hong Kong Customs learned that the agencies they purport to work for are unlicensed.

Local media said the said the two women deceived Filipinas aged 27-47 into paying at least $12,000 in supposed agency fees for jobs ranging from waiters to factory workers in Hong Kong and Macau.

The two – one aged 54, the other 42- operated from bogus employment agencies in Kwun Tong and To Kwa Wan. The people behind the “Phantom” operation suspected that the older one is the mastermind of the scam.

Those who were victims of similar scams can contact the Customs’ 24-hour hotline at 2545 6182.