Until last week, this Hunan fraudster surnamed Yuan must have thought he had it all figured out. He’d been stringing along 17 girlfriends whom he’d swindled for tens of thousands of yuan, and had been working with an engineering firm without ever having completed a university degree.
After getting into a car accident and taken to the hospital, however, the man’s luck ran out and his bluff was exposed, as all 17 of his girlfriends came to visit him and discovered his deception.
After meeting each other and getting a sickening sense of Déjà vu as they heard one another’s love story about Yuan (most of which had sprung from the popular social media apps QQ and WeChat), the women were understandably stunned as they stumbled upon their mutual lover’s sly scheme. Their bewilderment must have quickly given way to rage, and the women reported the man to police.
According to China Daily, a police investigation exposed the whole horrible truth on Yuan’s past and the crooked pretence he had drawn his female victims into. After cheating his ex-wife out of 250,000 RMB (approximately US$40,000) and divorcing her, he then proceeded to fleece his unsuspecting online girlfriends of tens of thousands of yuan. A closer look at his WeChat account revealed another 200 female targets he had in the crosshairs.
It also turned out that Yuan’s duplicity was not confined to his romantic relationships, but that he had also tricked an engineering firm with a Catch Me If You Can inspired con—by gaining employment with a fabricated civil engineering university degree, when, in reality, he possessed a mere middle school diploma.
Now that the sham is over, Yuan’s case will be charged as a criminal matter and he will face court for fraud. However, if we’ve learned anything from stories of jealous lovers in China, it is that hell hath no fury like a Chinese girlfriend scorned. Indeed, jail time looms as a far more attractive punishment than the one dished out by a vindictive scissors-wielding, penis-severing wife in Henan province earlier this year.
By Liam Bourke