Citizenship scam hits New Zealand

New Zealand migrants are being targetted by a phone-calling scam offering citizenship on the payment of documentation fees via Western Union.

The caller introduces himself as being from the non-existent “Asian Minority Group of Internal Affairs in Wellington” and appears to be targeting migrants from Nepal and Bhutan.

New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs has received several calls today about the scam, says General Manager for Regulatory and Compliance Operations, Maarten Quivooy.

“The phoney caller appears to know detailed information about the families he is ringing and explains that he can provide citizenship but money needs to be paid via Western Union to Nepal for certain document transfer fees,” Quivooy says.

“One person made two payments via Western Union of $984 and $485.

“We’re advising people who have called us that there is no such group in the Department and not to pay any money.

“They should also advise people around them about this matter and contact the Department via the phone numbers available on the DIA website if they need to clarify or confirm anything relating to NZ citizenship.

“To those who may have paid money, we have advised them to contact the Police and Western Union.”


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