Four Arrested In Connection To ‘Cursed Jewelry’ Scam Targeting Asian Women


Photos via NYPD

Four people have been arrested and charged in connection to a scam which targeted Asian women in Bensonhurst, Borough Park, and lower Manhattan recently, in which the con artists persuaded their victims that their valuables are cursed.

Three women, Yuqun Liang, 57,  Yan Chen, 46, and Xuekun Su, 44 and a male suspect, Yacheng Chen, 50, have been arrested and charged with grand larceny and scheme to defraud, according to police.

As part of the scheme, the con artists take advantage of Chinese superstitions by offering to bless their victims’ “cursed” jewelry and cash, telling them to put their valuables in a bag. However, instead of returning their victims’ belongings, the tricksters replace them with water bottles, police say.

In the most recent incident, a 54-year-old woman was approached on 48th Street in Borough Park at around 3pm, on Wednesday, June 22, say cops. Jewelry, totaling $3,000 in value and $19,000 was taken.

In Bensonhurst, a 61-year-old woman was approached at approximately 3pm on April 27, in front of 73 Bay 22nd Street. The crooks made off with $130,000, according to the NYPD.

Two more incidents that occurred in lower Manhattan and one in Queens, during which $20,000 to $280,000 was taken respectively. Police shared surveillance photos of five women that are wanted for questioning.

Bensonhurst has been plagued by “cursed jewelry” scams of this nature since 2013. The thieves often speak to their Chinese immigrant victims in Cantonese to earn their trust. Police warns residents to be vigilant and not to trust anyone who offers to rid their valuables of evil spirits.

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  • King Mills

    Two days in a row… two extreme criminal reports about the Chinese in Bensonhurst.
    It’s truly sad what has become of the area. Very easy to place blame.

    • Sean F

      What two stories? I don’t see anything from yesterday.

      • King Mills

        “31 Residents — Including 13 Children — Removed From ‘Heartbreaking’ Conditions In Illegally Converted Dyker Heights Home”

        • Sean F

          That’s not Bensonhurst.

          • King Mills

            lol b/c that’s the only one right?!? And that is closer to where I live then most stories on this site. No one cares about the people who live closer to DH. It’s the forgotten pocket.

          • Sean F

            First, you were the one who said “two extreme criminal reports about the Chinese in Bensonhurst” (love the way you’ve now edited it so it doesn’t say that). So, you lied to try to score points against a neighborhood where you don’t live.

            Second, this *is* a Bensonhurst site, so there’s no reason for them to cover Dyker.

            Third, my parents and brother live in Dyker (as well as many other relatives and friends). Lots of people care about it (myself included). Those folks just aren’t trolling around on a Bensonhurst site. They’re probably on a Dyker/Bay Ridge site elsewhere.

          • King Mills

            What? Who lied? Bensonhurst goes to 14th. Like it or not. I edited b/c fools like you take everything too literally. I said it’s CLOSER to where I live than the stories they cover on this site. I don’t live in Dyker or BR you clown. Are you going to lie and say this isn’t happening all over the area?

            And you want to talk about trolling? That’s pretty rich. I don’t think I’ve made a single comment on this website that YOU didn’t immediately follow up to. So who is the troll? Look in the mirror you dolt. You are not the voice of the neighborhood, quit trying to act like it.

  • Emme

    People seem to forget that before the Asians and the Russians, there were the Italians who used force and intimidation to commit crimes. It’s so easy to point a finger at how change is so negative. Neighborhoods are not stagnant.

    • King Mills

      Criminal activity is not wanted by anyone. Who’s justifying what the Italians did?