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Tokyo cops bust ‘it’s me fraud’ ring

Toshiki Kaneko
Toshiki Kaneko

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have busted a ring suspected of defrauding a number of persons by having members pretend to be the relatives of victims, reports TBS News (July 14).

On July 13, police raided a luxury apartment in Toshima Ward and arrested Toshiki Kaneko, 29, and two other persons on charges of attempted fraud.

According to police, one of the suspects allegedly posed on the telephone as the grandson of an 83-year-old woman in Chiba Prefecture and requested three million yen “due a pregnancy that resulted from an extra-marital affair.” All three suspects deny the charges.

During a search of the premises, police found a book for the University of Tokyo that includes telephone numbers and occupations for graduates. Police also seized mobile phones and personal computers, according to Fuji News Network (July 14).

The scam is known as ore ore sagi, or “it’s me fraud.” Police suspect that the group has used similar ploys as that attempted with the woman in Chiba to amass 130 million yen from victims since December of last year.

Kaneko moved into the apartment, which has a market value of approximately 70 million yen, in January.