An organised gang led by a Turkish national are said to have made millions of euros by disguising themselves as police officers and robbing the elderly in Vienna.
The gang, which has been in operation since 2018, is said to have been led by a 25-year-old Turkish man who is currently wanted on a European-wide arrest warrant.
He and the gang are alleged to have scoured phone books for residents in Vienna who sound elderly, and then post as police officers to gain trust and access.
The fake police officer then tells the victims their valuables are at risk and that the officer will visit them and “store” their jewellery and other items, Kronen Zeitung reports.
According to Austrian police, the gang was able to determine how much cash and valuables their victims had simply by speaking to them on the phone and gave strict instructions on how to hand over the victim’s property.
Paris: Fake Police Using Anti-Burqa Laws to ‘Fine’ Chinese Students Wearing Masks https://t.co/2AjYAGJhQu
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) March 10, 2020
Many of the victims have stated afterwards that they were put under intense psychological pressure by the gang and were also subjected to threats by them as well.
Similar scams have been seen in other European countries in recent years as well such as France where fraudsters handed out fraudulent fines for mask wearers, most of whom were Chinese nationals, earlier this year.
The fraudsters claimed to be enforcing France’s laws regarding the Islamic veil in February against Chinese students wearing medical masks.
Scams have increased greatly during the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic according to the European police agency Europol who noted in April that organised criminals were adapting to the coronavirus measure s imposed by European governments.
More recently, the international police coordination agency Interpol stated that organised gangs could even attempt to sell fraudulent vaccines to the public as governments roll out the first wave of vaccinations against the Wuhan coronavirus.
Interpol: Criminal Gangs Could Try to Sell Fake Coronavirus Vaccines https://t.co/8tirUFW5Rz
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) December 3, 2020