A Thai woman alleged to have scammed $9.7million out of lonely men in a series of financial crimes has been denied bail – for the third time.
Siriluck Fatima Chimmalee, 28, unsuccessfully represented herself at a bail hearing in the New South Wales Supreme Court on Tuesday – and will later face 103 charges.
She is alleged to have claimed to be a pilot, a lawyer, medical student and a handbag designer as part of alleged scams, which were believed to support her luxury lifestyle.
Siriluck Fatima Chimmalee (pictured, right) was arrested in February 2020 in relation to an alleged money laundering and fraud syndicate. She faces 103 charges, including those related to an alleged romance scam she ran
A Thai woman who invested $25,000 money in an online scam that Chimmalee is alleged to have been involved with
Her crimes are alleged to have included collecting money from Thai nationals to remit on their behalf and using the personal information of men she met online to apply for loans and credit cards and to register businesses intended to securing more credit.
NSW Police seized thousands of dollars worth of high-end fashion shoes and clothing (Chanel shoes pictured) from Chimmalee’s home in February
Chimmalee is alleged to have offered Thais in Australia better foreign exchange rates than banks to remit money to Thailand in a series of social media posts.
Some Thais were also offered involvement in complex ‘money-saving schemes’, it is alleged.
‘For example, if you invest $1,000 with [the scammer], they will give you interest of $60 fortnightly for the duration of three months,’ Kai told SBS Thai.
Kai, who invested $25,000, is believed to be one of hundreds of Thais caught in just one alleged scam.
Police investigations into a money laundering and fraud syndicate – under the name Strike Force McKeon – uncovered her alleged romance scams.
When police raided her South Strathfield home they seized high end fashion items including Louis Vuitton and Gucci shoes, Prada and Chanel bags and mobile phones.
The collection contained a Prada Saffiano Cuir bag valued at $4,015 brand new, which can be sold for around $2,000 second hand.
Police also took a Chanel Graffiti Crocodile Embossed Boy small bag worth $6886.
The charges Chimmalee faces include fraud and money laundering, dishonestly obtaining a financial advantage or causing disadvantage by deception, as well as identification fraud, dishonestly obtaining property and knowingly dealing with proceeds of crime.
In a bail hearing at the NSW Supreme Court, she told Judge Richard Button the claims against her – of stealing $9.7milion – were ‘unacceptable, unforgivable and untrue’, the Daily Telegraph reported.
A Chanel Graffiti Crocodile Embossed Boy Chanel Small Bag worth almost $6900 AUD was also collected by police
A sample of one of the social media posts used to allegedly scam Thais in Australia
‘I completely reject that kind of money was in play,’ she said.
Judge Button denied Chimmalee bail saying there was a chance she may not reappear, and may contact a Crown witness.
In court she responded to claims she had contacted an alleged victim from jail were ‘impossible’ as she had been on the phone with her lawyer at the time.
It was the third time Chimmalee has been denied bail.