Taipei, An online vendor was given a 14year jail sentence by the Taiwan High Court Thursday on 439 counts of fraud involving hundreds of victims, who made group purchases from her Facebook group pages.
The 40yearold woman, identified as Pu Nientzu sold discounted home appliances, computers, cellphones, department store gift vouchers, maternity/infant care products and luxury automobiles on her Facebook group pages from 2014 to late 2016, according to the ruling.
As product prices on her websites were 3050 percent lower than market price, many people across the country made group purchases, it said.
However, they later discovered that Pu often missed delivery dates, failed to give refunds and eventually disappeared altogether. After news of her going into hiding went viral on the internet, the authorities were inundated with fraud accusations against her, it said.
Despite eventually turning herself to police accompanied by a lawyer, Pu was indicted by prosecutors due to the seriousness of her crimes.
In August 2017, the Taipei District Court sentenced her to a jail term of 14 years, which was upheld by the high court Thursday after rejecting her appeal on the grounds that she failed to reach settlements with all the victims and because of the severity of her illegal activities.
The court found that Pu swindled 439 victims out of NT$251.67 million (US$8.09 million), according to the ruling.
The verdict is not final and can be appealed.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel