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18th March, 2020

Surgical mask fraudster arrested

A 35-year-old Honduran resident of Hungary has been arrested for taking advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to defraud a US company of nearly $100,000, by promising to provide non-existent surgical masks.

Prosecutors say that the man and his associates had signed a contract to supply 2.2 million masks by using data from an existing Hungarian company without its knowledge.

The suspect and his associates received an advance payment of nearly $100,000.

A representative of the American company travelled to Hungary to see the goods after the criminals asked for another Ft 8 million over the telephone.

The representative became suspicious and reported the matter to police, who captured the Honduran man in a Fifth District restaurant.

Sources regularly consulted, with abbreviations used in text: Népszabadság (N); Magyar Hírlap (MH); Világgazdaság (VG); Napi Gazdaság (NG); Magyar Nemzet (MN); Népszava (Nsz); Kossuth Rádió news (KR); nightly TV news (TV).

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