Scams and Fraud

Scams Targeting Chinese Students - Use of fake university letters

Police Scotland would like to make students aware of a worrying new technique used recently to trick a Chinese student based in Edinburgh out of tens of thousands of pounds, resulting in the termination of their studies.  

Scammers initially claimed to be Chinese police officers, stating they were investigating the student for money laundering following a parcel addressed to him being stopped as it contained bank cards. 

During the conversations that followed the student told the scammers which university he attended and within minutes received a letter headed document requesting financial evidence to ensure future study. The student was instructed to pay tuition fees for the next two years with a minimum deposit of £70,000.

The document appeared professional with relatively minor mistakes regards English spelling and grammar that could easily be missed by those who have English as a second language.

It would appear the document was produced quickly, once the university was identified, it is highly likely such fake letters could be quickly and easily produced for any university. Although this incident involved a Chinese student any student could receive such a letter and be tricked into transferring money.
Please note that Chinese students appear particularly vulnerable to scams - 
For further information see the below links: – fraud and scam protection – Police Scotland
or Fraud & Scam Prevention---Police Scotland (
Alternatively please contact
PC Sam Campbell (Police Scotland) – 5917 Preventions Team, West End Police Station, Edinburgh
Email –
Tel – 0131 221 2080