What is a “Black Dollar Scam”?
A businessman learned this the hard way after he fell prey to two foreigners who duped him of $40,000 in exchange for the tripling of his investment in a short period of time. But operatives of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) arrested the two Cameroon nationals in an entrapment on Thursday at Marcelo Green village, Paranaque City while receiving the supposed additional investment. They were identified as Oscar Ogie Mbang, 48; and, Celestine Tamasang Shuonka, 43. Both are residents of the Burgos Citadel Inn in Makati City. CIDG investigators said the Black Dollar Scam is a modus wherein the suspects would encourage people, especially businessmen, to provide them with money to remove the chemicals used to dye dollar bills in order to avoid detection on their entry to the Philippines. The money, according to the suspects, would be used to buy chemicals that would remove the dye on the dollar bills. Probers said the scammers would start by contacting the victims via e-mail or social media. In the case of the victim (whose name was withheld), police said he was contacted via Messenger by the suspects who told him that they were interested in his construction business. It was during the meet-up that the suspects presented the supposed dollar investment. The victim was first told to shell out $20,000 for the purchase of chemicals. Later, he was asked to give another $20,000. But the suspects still failed to provide the victim with the money as promised, prompting the latter to seek the assistance of the CIDG. Seized from the suspects were a pack of white paper, a pack of white paper with white powder covered with yellow tape, two black metal plates, two cellular phones, and two plastic sachets containing white crystalline substance believed to be shabu, a black canon bag, a plastic sachet containing undetermined white powder, a pack of self-sealed plastic containing undetermined yellowish powder, three brown bottles containing unknown liquid substance, a silver bottle containing unknown liquid substance, aluminum foil, a roll of white cotton, a pack of black counterfeit dollar with film covered with black plastic, basin and pail, cellular phone, 3 plastic sachets containing white crystalline substance believed to be shabu, and cash amounting to Php450.00 and $2,000.00. Charges of syndicated estafa, violations of Article 168 of the Revised Penal Code, and R.A. 9165 (Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act) will be filed against the arrested suspects.
(photos from PNP-CIDG)
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