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Australia, Vietnam break up Taiwanese fraud rings

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In this April 13, 2016, file photo released by Xinhua News Agency, Chinese and Taiwanese suspects involved in wire fraud, center, sit in a plane as th...

Australia, Vietnam break up Taiwanese fraud rings

In this April 13, 2016, file photo released by Xinhua News Agency, Chinese and Taiwanese suspects involved in wire fraud, center, sit in a plane as th...

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Australia detained two Taiwanese suspects of a telecom fraud ring while Vietnam arrested six Taiwanese nationals in a completely separate investigation, reports said Tuesday.
Previous groups detained in Kenya and Malaysia faced deportation to China, causing a major crisis in cross-straits relations. Taiwan succeeded in persuading Malaysia to send the alleged scammers home, where they were immediately freed on arrival. A delegation headed by the Ministry of Justice is leaving for China on Wednesday to discuss those who were sent to Beijing from Kenya.
The Australian police in Brisbane reportedly uncovered a Taiwanese-led fraud ring last August. Two Taiwanese citizens were accused of keeping up to 19 fellow countrymen in servitude and forcing them to conduct telecom scams against people in China, reports said. After their working visas were suspended, they were allowed to return home last August, but the two ring leaders were still being held, reports said.
In the other case, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the Vietnamese authorities detained six Taiwanese and several Vietnamese citizens who defrauded about a dozen people of a total of about NT$8.25 million (US$250,000). The victims were all Vietnamese, reports said, meaning the alleged perpetrators are unlikely to face deportation to China.
The members of the fraud ring reportedly posed as Vietnamese police and security personnel to intimidate citizens into parting with their money. MOFA said it accepted the jurisdiction of the Vietnamese authorities and would accept the investigation and verdicts delivered by the local judiciary.
The Taiwanese office in Ho Chi Minh City was arranging for visits to the accused, while the police forces of the two countries were already cooperating on the case, MOFA said.
While Taiwan and communist Vietnam do not maintain official diplomatic relations, there is an agreement on judicial cooperation.