69 Taiwanese suspects arrested in Indonesia for telecom fraud

Jakarta--A total of 69 Taiwanese suspects were arrested during massive raids on the alleged operational bases of an international ring committing telecommunication fraud in several Indonesian locations on Saturday, according to a senior Indonesian police officer.

Indonesian National Police Special Task Commander Tornagogo Sihombing said police had been tracking the criminal organization for several months before launching the raids in Jakarta, Sarabaya and Batam.

Police found that each member of the major fraud ring could have been receiving cash payoffs of approximately NT$45,400 (US$1,498) each month, Tornagogo noted.

According to Tornagogo, police arrested 27 fraud suspects at the high-end Benoa Community on Bali Island Saturday evening. Among the suspects, 10 are from Taiwan and the rest are all Chinese nationals, he said.

Meanwhile, police apprehended 93 fraud suspects in Surabaya that same day, including 33 Chinese and one Malaysian, according to reports on various Indonesian news websites.

The rest of the arrested suspects -- 59 -- are all Taiwanese nationals, the reports said.

Tornagogo confirmed that the suspects were from the same international fraud ring busted in Jakarta. The criminal organization kingpins believed it would be safer to set up operational bases elsewhere in the country because they thought it would be easier to dodge the law, he speculated.

The ring has been found to have also been active in other countries in the region, including Myanmar, Laos and Thailand, targeting victims in China and Taiwan, Tornagogo said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel