Unsey is the specialized department of the police which deals with cases related to extortion and telephone threats. They are contacted via ECU-911. Photo: Freepik.es
The Extortion phone calls or messages Create alarms in public. Police indicate that this is a criminal practice Has intensified since 2021, When the names of various criminal organizations are more visible due to prison killings
Unknown when this crime is configured, Pretending to be a member of a criminal gang, Operating in the country, to try Get economic benefits By threat or deception.
Statistics collected by the police show that Telephone extortion has increased in the country. In 2020, 1,210 cases were registered, rising to 1,628 in 2021, and from January to February 2 this year alone, agents received 244 complaints for this type of illegal activity. However, police admit that many decided not to file a complaint out of fear.
How do they work?
Based on the recorded cases, the police assure that the most at-risk individuals for extortion calls Entrepreneurs, merchants and health workers.
The information that these circles use to extort money from people is available Social communicationFor example, through this method they get information about the workplace, the names of relatives, all the places that the victim visits frequently or the location of the house.
“Criminals eat the information we spread through social networks and take advantage of it to make extortion calls,” said a police chief who is investigating the case.
Strangers demand money In exchange for not trying against the life of the victim or a member of his family. According to the police investigation, the amount claimed is between USD 500 and 10,000
For example, this Thursday, June 2, 2022, Lewis’s case spread on social networks. They demanded 10,000 US dollars from him so that his life would not be tried.
Lewis received a message saying: “You’re talking to Los Choneros, You heard of a bomb in Guayaquil that was dropped a few days ago. They are paying you to throw a bomb or shoot at you. We are going for you or a member of your family. ”
Victim replied: And how can I avoid it? The response he received was: “We want 10,000 10,000 for not bothering you or your family or touching you.”
Talk to this magazine too Glenda, A 39-year-old woman, whom They tried to extort him twice.
Here is his testimony:
“The whole thing happened on May 3 this year. That day I received a WhatsApp from an unknown number that read: ‘Good morning’. I replied to that message because it had reached my business cell phone selling religious articles.
Immediately the mobile rang. An employee of my business answered and kept the conversation loud. They were about a man who identified himself as a member of the Los Choneros gang. He could only say ‘if you don’t want anything bad to happen to them’. Panicked, we hung up the phone. We do not allow you to finish the sentence.
Then he called again from the same number.ro no longer answers. We only block communication.
I thought it was all over, but I’m wrong. On May 31, 2022, a stranger called again, from another telephone number.
On this occasion I remember him telling me again that he belonged to Los Choneros and claimed an economic contribution. Upon hearing this, I hung up the phone and blocked the number so that the criminals would not fall into the trap.
It is worrying that they tried to extort me twice in the same month. I did not file a complaint with the police and I did not call ECU-911 because the crime was not confirmed.”