May is Motorcycle Safety Month in Alberta. (File photo)

Victoria police warn Chinese community of ‘virtual’ kidnappings

Authorities say kidnappers often target young women in their early 20’s from China

Victoria Police are sending out a public warning to members of the Chinese community after several reports of an elaborate extortion scheme known as “virtual” kidnappings surfaced in Victoria and the Lower Mainland in recent weeks.

The victim receives a phone call from someone claiming to be the Chinese Consulate. They are then told that there is either a warrant for their arrest in China, or that the Chinese police need them to help with an investigation.

As part of the extortion, the kidnappers eventually convince the victim to make fake videos indicating they have been kidnapped or are the victim of a crime.

These videos are then sent to the victim’s family members, who are, in turn, extorted for money. The victim is then told to hide out from Canadian police at a motel or a short-term rental.

What can you do?

Police say if you are contacted by someone claiming to be from the Chinese Consulate or the Chinese Police and are asked to participate in a virtual kidnapping, you are asked to immediately contact your local police and remember these points.

  • The Chinese Police or government cannot arrest you in Canada.
  • All policing contact from the Chinese government will be through local police.
  • Canadian or Chinese authorities will not ask you to destroy a phone or to take photos or videos of yourself pretending to be the victim of a crime.
  • If you are contacted by someone claiming to be the Chinese police and they ask you to be of assist and investigation by pretending to be the victim of a crime, call (250) 995-7654 for assistance (even if they tell you not to).
  • The Victoria Police Department is here to help you. If you feel unsafe or threatened, please call us either by dialing 911 or (250) 995-7654.


ragnar.haagen@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

‘Toxic’ chosen as the Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries

Other top contenders for 2018 include ‘gaslighting’ and ‘techlash’

Temperature records broken in Esquimalt Harbour and four other B.C. cities

The last temperature record in Esquimalt Harbour was set in 1999

Pearkes book sale will have 15,000 titles

Some seek volume of books while others hunt early editions in annual Saanich sale

Gingerbread Showcase returns for another year of delicious fun in Victoria

Funds raised from the event support Habitat for Humanity Victoria’s build in Central Saanich

Unique technology gives children with special needs more independent play

UVic’s CanAssist refined seven prototypes aided by $1.5M government contribution

Greater Victoria holiday craft fair roundup for Nov. 16 to 18

Check off all of the items on your shopping list at these great events

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Nov. 14

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

RCMP bust illegal B.C. cannabis lab

Marijuana may be legal but altering it using chemicals violates the Cannabis Act

Avalanche Canada in desperate need of funding

The organization provides avalanche forecasting for an area larger than the United Kingdom

B.C. teacher’s Amazing Race takes students on Canada-wide adventure

Agassiz high school students say they had the experience of a life time

Don’t sign USMCA until LGBTQ language excised, U.S. lawmakers urge Trump

The trade agreement, forged after 13 months of tense negotiations between Canada and the U.S. is scheduled for Nov. 30

US official: US intel says prince ordered Khashoggi killing

Vice-President Mike Pence told reporters that ‘the murder of Jamal Khashoggi was an atrocity.’

Most Read