My son is a victim of Armageddon scam

Tuoi Tre News, Vietnam/October 21, 2011

After Tuoi Tre uncovered a Korean-origin doomsday cult that coaxes several individuals in Ho Chi Minh into selling lands while waiting for the end of the world, many readers have responded with their own stories of how members in their family fell victim to this scam.

"I'm afraid they have given her some addiction-producing liquid to drink. Please help her!" said N. worriedly when she contacted Tuoi Tre.

N. said her 21-year old niece V.C.T, a student of business management at HCM City's Hoa Sen University, was lured to join the sect a year ago.

"She goes to Huong Duong music school at 53/10A Phan Dang Luu, Ward 7, Phu Nhuan District for her prayer from 4am to 10pm every day. She neglects her study and exams. Her parents have got so worried about her but she doesn't care. She says if she cannot go, she will die," said N.

H., who lives in Tan Phu district, also reported that her sister was persuaded to join the cult a month ago. Convinced by their teachings, H.'s sister sold her house in district 4 for VND1.3 billion (US$62,400) and donated ten percent of the money to the group.

"What a strange group, they keep talking about Armageddon. Members are banned from worshipping ancestors and are not allowed to light incense to honor deceased relatives," said H.

Hoang Hai in Tan Binh district said his 19-year old son, H.N.T.L is also a victim. A year ago, L. was a hardworking student at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy. However, since joining the cult recently, he began to slack off, neglected his schoolwork and spent most of his time hanging out with other students at 43R Ho Van Hue in Ward 9, Phu Nhuan District.

"Since he joined that group, his head is always in the clouds. He doesn't want to study, saying the end of the world is coming in two years and there is no need to work hard," recalled L.'s father.

In an interview with Tuoi Tre newspaper last Tuesday, Ngo Giang Hoang Han, deputy head of the Ward 7 people's committee in Phu Nhuan said the committee had reported to the office of domestic affairs, the police departments in Ward 7 and Phu Nhuan district, the office of culture and information and sought for cooperation to handle the case.

Phu Nhuan police said they had checked the profiles and activities of the sect leaders and would soon find a solution to the problem.

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