Police have received at least 213 reports of overseas labor scams in recent weeks. Despite the government's public awareness campaigns, hundreds of Taiwanese people have fallen prey. An anti-scam organization that rescues victims has decided to stop accepting rescue missions for Taiwanese and Malaysian people.
This assault of a scam victim took place in Cambodia. A social worker that was trying to help victims fell prey themselves.
Wang Hsiu-yuan, Youth Lecturer, Chinese Childrenhome and Shelter Association: “I am still in contact with them, but off and on. They only found out it was a scam after they got there. If they didn't do as they were ordered, they were yelled at or beaten or locked in a small room. They didn't want to stay there.”
Rescues often require cooperation between police and civic groups. The Global Anti-Scam Org, which has long worked in Cambodia, recently dropped a bomb on Facebook, saying it is no longer accepting cases involving Taiwanese or Malaysian people that arrived in Cambodia on or after Aug. 3.
Candy, GASO Volunteer: “Our goal is to prevent these people from going to these places. However, when the situation ends of like this, you have to ask yourself what you're doing and why you're doing this.”
Public awareness campaigns by the government have been ineffective in preventing Taiwanese workers from answering job ads in other countries. GASO says it risked its own people to rescue over 60 Taiwanese victims and didn't get so much as a thank-you from a single person. The Criminal Investigation Bureau has received over 213 Cambodia scam reports so far.
Liao Yi-li, Detective, Crime Prevention Affairs Sec., CIB: “If the company that placed the job ad doesn't appear legal and it is offering high-paying jobs that don't require any experience, you should be careful.”
Police have issued countless warnings about Facebook job ads, but the number of victims keeps rising. The Control Yuan has ordered an investigation.
Yeh Ta-hua, Control Yuan Member: “This is a severe violation of human rights so it needs to be investigated.”
The Control Yuan wants to know if government agencies including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Labor have a clear grasp of the situation and if there are any cross-agency efforts to provide overseas aid and assistance and come up with response measures.