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8 ‘girlfriends’ defrauded of over 5m yuan by handsome graduate

A man described as highly educated with a good job has been sentenced to 12 years in jail for cheating eight “girlfriends” out of more than 5.47 million yuan (US$802,650).

Jing’an District People’s Court said the defendant surnamed Ruan, 33, worked as a manager for the Shanghai office of a multinational firm after obtaining a postgraduate degree from Britain’s Manchester University.

He earned almost 30,000 yuan a month, but became addicted to online football betting in April 2015 and started to lose huge amounts.

Before he was caught last November, he had lost more than 6 million yuan on gambling, including the ill-gotten gains he had made from women, the court said.

Ruan was popular with the ladies because of his good looks and a luxurious life style. He decided to “exploit” the situation, the court added.

One of the victims, identified as Wu Wei, said she had met Ruan through a dating website a year ago. She said she fell in love with him as she had been seeking a “successful man with an overseas background.”

After their first date, Ruan told her that his firm was auditing his account and he asked her for 130,000 yuan to cope with the investigation.

Some days later, he falsely claimed he accidentally leaked the company’s secrets and was ordered to pay 185,000 yuan as compensation.

Wu believed his story and said he had borrowed nearly 3 million yuan from her in about two months for a variety of reasons, including covering his father’s medical bills to a “ransom “paid to a gang.

Last August Wu visited Ruan’s office and realized she had been swindled.

Police investigation showed Ruan had several “girlfriends” before he opted to get out of Shanghai.

He was put on the police’s online pursuit system. Last November 14, police from southwest China’s Chongqing City caught him in the lobby of a five-star hotel.

The court found Ruan had swindled eight women out of 5.47 million yuan since November 2015. As well as being jailed, he was fined 200,000 yuan. His parents had returned 500,000 yuan to the victims, the court said.


 

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