Vancouver police warn about bracelet scam after senior loses $15,000

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Vancouver police are warning the public about a bracelet-selling scam targeting seniors in the Chinese community.

Police said a 60-year-old Chinese woman fell victim to the scam on June 9 and lost $15,000 in cash.

The woman had just finished a shopping trip in Chinatown when she was approached by a female suspect.

Two other suspects later appeared to help stage the scam, according to a news release from Vancouver police today (June 28).

One suspect offered to sell the jewelry while the other two encouraged the woman to make the purchase.

They attempted to persuade the victim that she should buy a “blood” jade bracelet to avoid suffering bad luck such as a family death.

The suspects also suggested the bracelet was rare, had special powers, and could help cure health problems.

The victim initially gave the suspects $500 in cash she was carrying. The group then accompanied her to a bank to withdraw the rest of the money.

Police said they cautioned the public about a similar scam in 2008.

The suspects are described as Chinese women between 40 and 60 years of age who speak Cantonese. Their heights are between five feet, one inch and five feet, four inches.

Police said the suspect selling the jewelry had a gray purse and wore a gray fisherman-style hat.

Anyone with information can call 9-1-1 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or the Chinese Community Policing Centre at 604-688-5030.

Comments (3) Add New Comment
jonny .
I dont think that is really a crime

Lots of asians have superstitious believes about silly things like bear bile and other stuff. If this was illegal then selling all kinds of good luck charms would be illegal too, and its not.

That old lady is a sucker, and she lost a lot of money because of it. Thats what you get for being a sucker.

It hink the only way this is a crime is if the old lady is senile and they took advantage of her, but if she was, she wouldnt be out shopping on her own, or have access to a bank account.
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DavidH
@jonny: In our country (which is clearly your second home), we don't look kindly on fleecing elderly "suckers". Perhaps that is the norm in your native land, I don't know, and I certainly don't care.

You might also be surprised to know that we allow our seniors to live their own lives, which would include shopping and access to a bank account. Perhaps in the third world cesspool you crawled out of, that's unusual - but not here.

Please stop sticking your nose into affairs that are none of your business. Go home, twit.
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Cel
Hang on - where is the crime here?

Is it lying about the properties of an item? If that is truly a crime, then I agree it should be - but to my knowledge, it is not illegal to lie about selling items that are "good luck" etc.

Or is the crime that you are not allowed to lie about the properties of items above a certain dollar amount?

Again, I would support making that illegal, but to my knowledge that is not a crime either.

Or is the crime that they used illegal coercion (threats of force, or other unlawful threats / actions) in order to get her to pay them for the bracelet?

If that is true, then that certainly is illegal...but was that the case?
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