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November 21, 2013

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Two charged for fleecing drivers with fake accidents

Two people who extorted money from drivers by faking accidents have been charged with fraud, the Qingpu District prosecutors said yesterday.

The suspects, surnamed Wang and Zhu, along with three teenagers were nabbed on July 19 when they tried to extort 8,000 yuan (US$1,313) from a  tricycle driver on Anhe Road in Qingpu District. Prosecutors said Wang stopped the driver, surnamed Jin, claiming he saw him hit a man. Jin then found a teenager lying on the ground, and Zhu suddenly showed up, pretending to be the teenager’s brother.

Zhu told Jin to take his “brother” to the hospital where doctors said the boy had fractures on his finger. They estimated the cost of surgery would be 15,000 yuan. Zhu then tried to strike a deal, telling Jin that he was willing to settle the matter if he paid him 8,000 yuan as compensation.

Jin agreed but asked Zhu and the “injured” boy to sign a mediation agreement at the police station, where the officers suspected something was fishy. After probing further they discovered the con game.

Prosecutors said Wang and Zhu “recruited” three teenage boys — 14, 16 and 17 years of age, respectively — to con the drivers and extort money from them. Before Jin, they had successfully swindled money from more than 10 drivers in several districts.

The teenagers told prosecutors Wang and Zhu injected anesthesia into their fingers and broke them with a hammer. The boys agreed to the deal because they wanted to make quick money.

Prosecutors said the 17-year-old teenager was also charged with fraud and will face trial for his involvement in most of the cases. The 16-year-old was given 10 days detention while the 14-year-old was released.



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