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Singaporean Man Crowdfunds Over $10,000 For Vietnamese Tourist Cheated By Local Store

Pham Van Thoai, a Vietnamese tourist, recently traveled to Singapore where he was “cheated” by an electronics store when buying an iPhone. After the story went viral, a Singaporean man started an Indiegogo campaign, raising over $10,000.

With news of the incident spreading on social media sites, many Singaporian netizens expressed their frustrations with the store which is notorious for cheating customers.

As a token of apology from the people of Singapore, a local man, Gabriel Kang, took to crowd funding platform, Indiegogo, to raise funds for Thoai:

“You must have heard this in the news... a Vietnamese tourist, Mr Pham Van Thoai came to Singapore for a dream holiday with his girlfriend. In a move that must surely qualify him as a boyfriend-of-the-year candidate, he pays S$950 to buy an iphone 6 as a birthday gift for his girlfriend. As a factory worker making a salary of S$200 a month in vietnam, this makes his purchaseequivalent to 5 months of his salary. So, when was the last time you spent half a year of your salary on your significant other?

Now most of us do some basic research online before dropping serious money on our gadgets and he must have done the same as he knew right away that S$950 was an unbelievable bargain. So the retailers make him sign some ridiculously worded invoice in english (a language he barely understands) and as he was leaving the store, they stopped him and forced him to pay an additional S$1500 for a bogus 1-year warranty before they would allow him to leave with what he believed he had purchased. 

The retailers (Mobile Air Pte Ltd) "generously" offer to refund S$600 but as this would mean that 2 whole months of salary would be stolen from him, he refuses.He then goes down on his knees and begs them to refund the rest of his money while the staff at the outlet laughed at him. 

This is NOT "ok", This is NOT right. We are *NOT* a nation of thieves and cheats. This kind of scam should NOT be allowed to continue here, much less prosper like it has. But while I, as an individual can do very little to change this, together as a community we can put pressure on the lawmakers that allows scams like these to thrive over the last few years. (The first 2 floors of Sim Lim Square are notorious for scams like these over the last 5 years or more).”

With 7 days still remaining, Kang’s Indigogo campaign as blown by its $1,350 goal, currently at $10,798, a number that is still rising.

Kang doesn’t mention how he plans to get the funds to Thoai, but given the intense media coverage, he’ll probably find a way to do so (lest he be slaughtered at the hands of thousands of angry Indigogo users).

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