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Queens Chronicle

Flushing con artist guilty

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Posted: Thursday, December 12, 2013 10:30 am

An illegal alien from China pleaded guilty on Dec. 5 to conning three Flushing women, ranging in age from 52 to 72, out of large sums of cash and other property through a trick called a “blessing ritual,” District Attorney Richard Brown reports.

Common in Asian communities, the con involves telling victims that a family member is going to get sick or die, and the only way to avoid that is to place their cash and valuables in a bag and have it blessed.

When the victims here complied, the bags were switched with identical bags filled with worthless items, and the defendant and her accomplices made off with the victims’ cash and jewelry.

The defendant, Fengluan Qin, 50, faces up to three years in prison and will have to pay back her victims $4,765, as well as another $10,000, Brown said.

“This particular con game is prevalent in Asian communities across the country and the targets of the scam are oftentimes elderly immigrant women,” he said. “People should be aware that this is just one of many confidence tricks used by individuals to swindle money from vulnerable people.”

— Peter C. Mastrosimone

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