Soh Chih Hui was an 18-year-old con artist five years ago when she tricked a much older woman named Goh Seng Mui into handing all her life savings, an insurance payout, and even borrowed money using a ploy that involved acting like several different Chinese deities.
Who is Soh Chih Hui?
According to a report by TODAY, Soh, who was eighteen at the time she committed the crimes in 2015, was the daughter of Goh’s primary school friend. The scam started when Soh showed the victim a photo of a man on her mobile phone, and said that the victim was destined to be her husband.
Soh told her that the man earned $7,000 a month, and owned a temple in Changi. She also claimed that the man in the photo she showed the victim worked at a bank.
But to be able to get her destined husband, Soh told Goh that she had to “borrow fate” or have good karma to be able to get this man as her husband. The victim was 56 at the time of the crime, and that she was tasked with many things to be able to get this man as a husband.
A report from Channel News Asia said that Soh told the victim to pray, enact rituals, and make several offerings. Soh also required her to give cash for the purpose of buying branded clothes, cosmetics, and shoes.
For the period of April to October in 2015, the victim gave Soh $49,600. This included her savings, and money that she had asked from her brother in a loan, all in the hopes of getting the man in the photo as her husband.
The victim said that Soh had appeared to her as if she was possessed by a deity, using a very high-pitched voice at one instance, then on another occasion using a lowered voice.
Only when Soh had asked the victim to sell her HDB flat did the victim lodge a police report.
What happened to the case involving Soh Chih Huih?
According to the same reports, Soh admitted to duping the Goh with her pretend play as deities, but that she did not get any money from the woman. The woman, on the other hand, said that she did give Soh a lot of cash, but thought that it was much more than the $49,600 because she could not keep track of all the money she had given.
Prosecutors for the case said that Soh treated Goh like an “ATM machine” and would ask for money continuously during the period of the crime.
The prosecution also said that the victim was a deeply religious person and would always pray and make valuable offerings to temples, and that this was what Soh used to capture her trust and ensnare her in the scheme.
They said that the deity personas were used particularly when Soh wanted to get cash from the victim, with one child-like deity appearing most often and another deity named “Fu Wang” on other occasions.
Sentencing for Soh was set for December 3, and she could be imprisoned for ten years for cheating.