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August 16, 2011

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Prisoner's wife ripped off in bail scam

A former prisoner pretended to be a prosecutor and defrauded his ex-cellmate's wife by telling her he would get her husband released, Fengxian District prosecutors said yesterday.

The suspect, surnamed Xu, was detained and charged with taking 5,000 yuan (US$782) from the wife of his former roommate in a detention house, claiming that her husband would be freed after she paid the bail.

Xu had already been under criminal detention twice for theft and fraud in June and July, prosecutors said.

During his second detention, Xu gained the trust of his roommate, surnamed Zou, who was detained for a fight. Zou told Xu about why he was detained, his head injuries and the fact that his family used to send money to his home.

Xu told Zou that his crime was not severe and that he could be bailed out. When Xu was released on bail pending trial on July 13, Zou asked him to call his wife and find out when he could be freed.

On July 17, Xu called Zou's wife, surnamed Wang. But he claimed he was a Fengxian District prosecutor "who could get her husband out" if Wang would pay the "bail deposits."

The wife was taken in because Xu knew a lot about Zou and showed her a fake working certificate and files, which he bought from other two suspects, prosecutors said.

On July 18, Wang met Xu and paid him 5,000 yuan only to get a fake receipt.

Two days later, she realized she was cheated and reported the scam to police. Xu was captured on July 27.

Prosecutors said the other two suspects were also under criminal detention for faking and selling certificates.


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