Japan: Eleven Arrests in Connection with Trafficking of 2,000 Consoles
Sankei Shimbun and the Kobe Shibun NEXT website both released reports on January 18 stating that eleven individuals were apprehended by a combined force of the Hyogo prefectural police’s cybercrime investigation division and Gunma prefectural police, for alleged fraudulent activities involving setting up fake accounts to purchase multiple game consoles (the model of which is unknown) for resale purposes. (Editor’s note: the picture used to illustrate this article is of a PlayStation5, but neither the site nor the paper specifies the console targeted by these actions).
The eleven individuals suspected – comprising both men and women, including a 17-year-old high school student and a company executive aged 19 – are charged with generating a plethora of fraudulent accounts to register on an online electronics sales site on October 16, and procuring 18 gaming consoles– totaling an estimated 684,000 yen. The consoles were purportedly delivered to a residential complex in Nagoya.
Following investigations, based solely on the counterfeit accounts utilized by the eleven suspects on the specialized online outlets, it’s estimated that around 2,000 consoles (worth approximately 85 million yen) were bought and resold in just October 2023.
Typically, single individuals are only allowed to purchase a limited number of gaming consoles to prevent their resale.
The authorities are presently engaged in an inquiry to trace the origin of the funds used for the console purchases.