Scam­mers still up to their tricks de­spite lo­cal ef­forts to stop them

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - COMMENT - THE RING­LEADER BE­HIND A TELE­PHONE SCAM

in Linyi, Shan­dong prov­ince, in which the young vic­tim died of car­diac ar­rest last Au­gust, was sen­tenced to life im­pris­on­ment by the Linyi In­ter­me­di­ate Peo­ple’s Court on Wednes­day. The other six de­fen­dants re­ceived prison terms rang­ing from 3 to 15 years. Peo­ple’s Daily com­ments:

The heavy penal­ties demon­strate the firm re­solve of the ju­di­cial au­thor­i­ties to pun­ish those in­volved in tele­phone scams.

Xu Yuyu, a high school grad­u­ate in Linyi, died of car­diac ar­rest on Aug 21 last year af­ter she was tricked into re­mit­ting 9,000 yuan ($1,331) to an ac­count set up by the fraudsters.

Her fam­ily lives on her mi­grant worker fa­ther’s in­come and the money had been saved over a year to pay for her first years’ tu­ition and liv­ing costs at a key uni­ver­sity in Nan­jing, Jiangsu prov­ince.

As many of the fraudsters in­clud­ing the cul­prits in the Xu Yuyu case are from sev­eral towns in Anxi county, Fu­jian prov­ince, the pub­lic se­cu­rity au­thori-

ties should not only fo­cus on in­ves­ti­gat­ing the cases that have al­ready hap­pened, but also take ac­tion to pre­vent young peo­ple in the county from be­com­ing in­volved in the chi­canery.

Al­though the Anxi po­lice have launched spe­cial cam­paigns to deal with lo­cal gangs for 13 con­sec­u­tive years, that has not stopped the county from be­com­ing a na­tional cen­ter of the dirty trade. That some of the county’s in­hab­i­tants re­gard shell games as a way to make a liv­ing, not a crime, shows just how far China is from re­solv­ing the is­sue.

The higher au­thor­i­ties must take ac­tion as lo­cal ef­forts are not enough to put an end to the scams.

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