A Life of Deceit Comes to an End

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A Life of Deceit Comes to an End

Her resume would impress anyone. First, a B.A. from Seoul National University, Korea's best, then a Researcher at a think tank affiliated with the Ministry of Finance and Economy.

She lives in Sanbon, a suburb near Seoul, and drives a luxury sedan. She also gives 5 million won each to her husband and parents every month.

However, the Anyang police in Kyonggi Province arrested this 27-year-old woman, identified only as Lim, for falsifying her credentials for over 8 years. Even her husband and parents fell victim to her deceit.

Over the past 8 years, Lim pocketed as much as 4 billion won ($3.65 million) by falsifying her credentials.

According to the statement contained in the arrest warrant, Lim took 4 billion won ($3.65 million) from five people who believed her claim that she manages slush funds at a government-run economic research institute. However, the police expects the amount of the swindled money to increase since it uncovered as much as 12 billion won worth of transactions in her account.

Actually, Lim only has a high school education and has a two-year old daughter. Her double life began when she lied to her parents that she was accepted at Seoul National University back in 1992. She completely acted as a SNU student. On the weekends, she would hang out with SNU students at churches and libraries. She would never miss SNU club activities or parties. She took graduation pictures wearing her SNU attire and later attended alumni gatherings. She married her husband in 1995 who completely believed her story.

Lim began to commit more serious acts of fraud in March 1996. She approached a friend, Kim, and told him that she managed slush funds for the president's office. She promised if Kim gave her 50,000,000 won, she would invest it in the stock market and pay him 30 percent in interest. She managed to collect 4 billion won from about 40 different individuals using the same scheme. According to the police statement, Lim would pay 30 percent interest in two to three days to appear trustworthy and additional investors flocked to her.

by Chung Chan-min

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