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College students invents kidnapping story to extort money from parents

A 21-year-old college student fabricated a kidnapping story to extort 20,000 yuan (US$3,218) from her parents to cover her World Cup gambling debts, Shanghai police said.

On June 22, the student’s mother, surnamed Hu, received a text message at her home in Wuxi from a supposed kidnapper who threatened to pimp her daughter if 20,000 yuan wasn’t transferred to her bank account immediately. Hu failed when trying to contact her daughter.

She and her husband found the number was from Shanghai and traveled to the city. They received another text the next day asking them to deliver the money to the gate of Kunyang Road Primary School in Minhang District.

Bijiang Road Police Station began investigating and said the student, Xiao Cai, left Wuxi at around 10pm on June 20 and claimed to be visiting a friend in Shanghai who lives in a compound on Jiangchuan Road.

When the police reached the residence, Xiao was watching a soccer game alone. She had lost around 1,000 yuan betting on the World Cup games online. When her parents refused to give her the money, she left for Shanghai. The police chastised her for her irrational behavior.


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