Intern acting as doctor on WeChat cheats patients

An intern at a local hospital has been charged with fraud after he duped vulnerable patients into paying up 43,000 yuan.

An intern at a local hospital who impersonated a surgeon and demanded 43,000 yuan (US$6,455) from patients has been sentenced to ten months behind bars for fraud by the Jing’an District People’s Court.

The man, surnamed Chen, was an intern at the anesthesiology department of a Shanghai hospital, the name of which hasn't been disclosed. Between late April and early May, he used the name and password of the head of the department to enter the hospital’s internal system, gaining access to medical treatment records and surgery schedules.

He then impersonated a surgeon and contacted families of patients through WeChat, asking for money and claiming he would do his best in upcoming surgeries. As the families were afraid that he might behave carelessly in surgery if they didn't stump up the cash, they all paid him. It wasn't revealed how many people were cheated, but over the period he defrauded a total of 43,000 yuan.

Chen would cut contact with them after receiving the money, leading some of the families to become suspicious and report the matter to police. He was caught on May 8 and has admitted his guilt.

Since he returned the ill-gotten money, Chen was able to receive a lighter sentence of ten months behind bars, and was also fined 6,000 yuan.

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