Man arrested after car owners buy bogus insurance

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 10 September, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 10 September, 2005, 12:00am

A man has been arrested after at least two vehicle owners were allegedly conned into buying non-existent third-party insurance.


Police are calling for anyone else who might have been duped to come forward after the two owners complained they had paid out a total of $6,560 in separate cases for the non-existent policies.


Senior Inspector Tsang Ming-to of Tsim Sha Tsui police station said the cheats had placed advertisements in a magazine in July claiming to be agents for an insurance company.


'Attractive prices were offered to car owners and a mobile phone number was printed in the advertisement,' he said.


'But investigations revealed that the company did not exist and copies of the cover notes were also found to be false.'


A 31-year-old man answered the advertisement in July, to renew his third-party insurance, police said.


After a series of telephone negotiations with the 'agency', the car owner deposited $2,760 into a designated bank account and received a fax copy of a cover note purporting to be from the insurance company.


Senior Inspector Tsang said the man realised he had been duped when he checked with the insurance company after not receiving the original of the policy.


He lodged a complaint with Tsim Sha Tsui police on August 23.


The same month, a 21-year-old man complained to Wan Chai police that he had been duped in the same way out of $3,800.


A 27-year-old man identified as the bank-account holder was put on the wanted list after police raided his home and failed to find him.


On September 4, the suspect was arrested when he was intercepted in a routine stop-and-search operation in Kowloon City.


The suspect, arrested for obtaining property by deception, has been released on bail of $1,500. He is required to report back to police on October 4.


Senior Inspector Tsang said: 'People should stay alert and make verification with related companies if they become involved in such telephone transactions.'