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    Great. The ore-ore scam is back, according to the Yomiuri:

    The monthly average of all remittance-related fraud this year has been 92 cases. Should such frauds continue at the same rate this month, July’s figure would be about 150–about 60 percent higher than the monthly average so far this year.

    Notable is the increase in the number of “It’s me calling” scams, in which criminals deceive elderly people by pretending to be a relative and asking them to remit money, with explanations such as “I’ve lost money on the stock exchange.”

    Such methods are believed to be similar to those mainly used around 2003, techniques that criminals have used less frequently in recent years.

    Members of criminal groups who were arrested around that time and had been serving prison terms have now been released. The MPD is strengthening its measures to tackle this kind of crime as it believes the same groups could be back in operation.

    According to the MPD, 552 remittance frauds were committed in the first six months of this year–1,909 fewer cases than in the first half of 2008.

    Criminals cheated victims out of about 869 million yen in the first half of 2009–again a sharp decline of about 2.91 billion yen from the same period last year, the MPD said.

    That makes it hard to tell whether this is a new trend emerging, though the part about those convicted years ago being out of prison now isn’t exactly comforting.

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