Hypnotising the vulnerable and robbing them of their money and valuables is a new scam that has been recently reported in the Auckland area.
Police said the scam artists typically target the elderly by first befriending them and then putting them in a hypnotic trance.
Fraudsters are quick to exploit the power of hypnosis by first making contact with lone victims, usually in deserted areas and winning over their trust.
A resident of Half Moon Bay was recently the victim of a hypnotic scam.
On her daily walk, the Asian senior was approached by an Asian couple who appeared quite friendly and spoke to her in Mandarin.
Unaware that she was being hypnotised, the woman was told to hand over all her possessions.
Mesmerised, the lady took the offenders home and handed over all her cash and valuables to them.
By the time the trance state wore off, the thieves were long gone.
Area Commander Counties Manukau East, Inspector Wendy Spiller confirms the reported incident.
“In Half Moon Bay an elderly Asian woman who was on her daily walk was confronted by an Asian couple who were able to put her in a trance,” she says.
“The offenders then took the victim home where she handed over a large amount of cash and jewellery.
“She then awoke from the trance, with no idea on how she was so affected.”
“It sounds very strange but this sort of offending has been reported overseas and we want to make people aware as we do not want this to happen here,” she says.