Attractive salaries, prestigious employers — but it's all a con

Five have been detained in a job scam where a gang claimed to be recruiting workers for well-known local companies, police said. It is just one of many similar scams in Shanghai.

Five people have been detained, another put on bail and a seventh still being hunted in job scams in which the gang claimed to be recruiting workers for well-known local companies, police said on Thursday.

Job openings allegedly offered by Shanghai Disneyland, Happy Valley, the city's airports and the Metro were posted on popular classified websites such as ganji.com and 58.com, according to police in Songjiang District who were in charge of the case.

Job applicants were told to register their personal information at six "interview centers" in Songjiang, mostly near Metro stations, and then paid 170 to 700 yuan (US$25 to US$105) to the gang for physical checks, transport and other unspecified purposes, police said.

Jiefang Daily

One of the "Interview Centers" in Songjiang District.

All job applicants were taken to to get physical checks at a  private hospital, which Jiefang Daily reported was Anzhen Hospital.

After going through the process, the job applicants were then turned down and the money they had paid was never returned, police said.

Job scams entrapping job seekers on classified websites have been on the rise in recent years across China.

Recently in Shanghai, police in Putuo District and Jinshan District solved two similar scams.

Victim became fraudster

In Putuo District, seven suspects have been arrested for allegedly defrauding at least 14 people over 100,000 yuan (US$15,000) in job scams.

The gang posted job openings with attractive salaries in the name of a hotel management company on popular classified websites in China to draw job applicants, police said.

Police began to receive complaints last April and one of the victims, a man surnamed Xu, said he had lost 3,000 yuan to the gang.

Xu said he paid the money as a deposit to a man who claimed to be a manager of the company. After a brief interview, Xu was told that he would get the driver’s job he had applied for.

“I had no doubt because the contract they signed with me seemed to be really official, and also the company’s office was located in a business park,” he recalled.

Among the suspects is a 38-year-old woman who previously fallen prey to a similar scam but said she then joined the gang hoping to get her money back.

The suspect, surnamed He, said she realized she had been conned only after paying 9,000 yuan to the gang, but through then working for the fraudsters she had made 3,000 yuan from three victims.

Human resource manager involved

In suburban Shanghai, three suspects were caught in a fraud against job seekers at the end of last month in which they allegedly profited about 40,000 yuan, and two of them worked for a human resource firm.

Police in Jinshan District started investigation at the end of June after a man surnamed Zhang came to them saying that he had lost 450 yuan to a person who was recruiting people for Gree, a well-known local electronics manufacturer, claiming to be a manager of the company.

Zhang said he saw the job notice on ganji.com, but Gree denied that it had issued any such notice, nor was it recruiting at that time, police said.

The job notice was allegedly posted by one of the suspects, a man surnamed Li who had nothing to do with the company, and then the job seekers were told to be “interviewed” at the human resource firm the other two suspects worked for.

The job seekers paid 400 to 500 yuan to the two suspects each, a man surnamed Ma and another man surnamed Qian, as “job application and physical check fees”, and the two would later pay 50 to 100 yuan to Li, police said.

Li owned up to the police that he had started posting job notices last March.


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