OSAKA (TR) – With fraud carried out via the telephone remaining an issue across the prefecture, police have enlisted the help of two members of popular idol group NMB48 for assistance, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Dec. 14).
On Monday, Karin Kojima, 21, and Nagisa Shibuya, 24, received a certificate commemorating their participation in reducing crimes referred to as tokushu sagi, or special fraud.
“I heard that many of [special fraud] victims are of the same generation as my grandparents,” said Kojima. Shibuya added, “I don’t think we should forgive [the perpetrators] of sneaky crimes like special fraud.”
For the next two years, Kojima and Shibuya will carry our public relations activities with the Osaka police to reduce incidents of special fraud.
“Even during the coronavirus pandemic, many elderly were targeted [by fraudsters],” said Hisashi Takagi of the head of the community safety division of the Osaka police. “I want to engage in activities that spread the word about such crimes so as to reduce losses.”
Between January and October, police recorded 920 such cases across the prefecture, a decrease by more than 40 percent over the year before.
Despite the drop, police noted that the amount lost reached a sizable 1.88 billion yen.