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Scams, called “sagi” in Japanese, are often aimed at older people, taking advantage of their kindness or ignorance of modern trends. The most common sagi is the ore ore sagi, where young men call older people and pretend to be a member of their family, quickly saying “It’s me, it’s me, I’m in trouble,” and asking for immediate financial help. As these scams have become more common, the government has done a better job of warning people, with posters and bank staff frequently warning customers to be sure that they have their facts straight before making any large money transfers from their account.

Unfortunately, one older man in Tochigi Prefecture has found himself the victim of an altogether more insidious sagi.

The unnamed victim was reportedly fleeced out of around 30,000,000 yen (about US$297,144) after receiving a letter informing him that “the pornographic videos you have purchased are illegal.” The letter explained that by buying the raunchy DVDs, the man was also implicated in the crime. Finally, he read that if he wanted to avoid the matter becoming public, he should call the included phone number.

Upon ringing the number, the man was told, “The women who performed in the films are suffering,” and, “if you just pay up, we don’t have to go to court.

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Perhaps to avoid the public shame or feeling twinges of guilt for the women, the man paid the roughly 30,000,000 yen in eight installments via the post office’s cash transfer system. Eventually, he thought something was suspicious about the whole thing and contacted the police.

We hope it’s not too late for them to recover at least some of his money.

And, please, consider warning your relatives. Though, as one Internet commenter said: “I better let my uncles know about this. Though bringing up the subject of their adult video collections might be a bit difficult…”

The government is strongly recommending that people not respond to any suspicious letters or phone calls.

Source: JIN115
Images: Wikimedia.org (wallet, DVDs)