Migrants, all from India, were made to pay about $3000 by the fraudsters pretending to be officials from Immigration New Zealand to avoid deportations. All the Indian migrants had recently returned to New Zealand after vacationing in India. At least 11 victims of the fraud have reported that they received phone calls from a number that appeared as one designated to the Immigration New Zealand and were asked to pay about $3000 as they made mistakes on their immigration forms which could potentially lead their removal from the country.
According to a report in The New Zealand Herald, migrants of Indian descent were target to swindle thousands of dollars out of their pockets by deportation threats if they did not pay the fine to the Indian immigration authorities for mistake they had made on the immigration forms while leaving India. To make the threat real and serious, a phone number that is assigned to the Immigration New Zealand was used most probably using sophisticated technology to hide the real identity.
All the victims were asked to transfer money in accounts which are located in India as the mistake was made in India and it was the fine to rectify the mistake.
It is not clear, though, how the fraudsters were able to find out the identity and contact information of the victims who arrived recently from India. Someone at an Indian airport responsible for keeping the record of the expatriates leaving the country most probably had provided the information to imposters who then used the information to make it look like a real possible situation that could lead to migrants removal from the country.
Migrants are advised to report immigration fraud by using the Crimestoppers service by filling online form or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.