SF police battling scam targeting Asian women

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – San Francisco police say thieves have made off with almost $2 million in an ongoing scam targeting elderly women in the Chinese community.

The most recent cases were over the holiday weekend, when two women in their 60s were targeted. Police Capt. Garret Tom says the victims were told they and their valuables needed to be purified because they had stepped in blood and were being overtaken by evil spirits.

Each victim lost as much as $35,000.

In May, prosecutors announced the arrests of three women they say stole more than $100,000 worth of cash and jewelry from elderly women they approached on the streets with a similar scam.

Forty-two-year-old Huifei Lin, 43-year-old Caiqiong Chen, and 57-year-old Lirong Lin are facing multiple counts, including grand theft and extortion.

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