■ Universal Studios, one of the most famous theme parks in the world, was originally a place that brought people joy and magic.
This summer, about a low-cost card scam at Universal Studios Beijing, some consumers who wanted to be happy at a low price lost money and could not enter the park, and some middlemen who wanted to make money paid a fortune.
■ Now, the initiator of this scam, Zhan Moumou, has been detained by the police.
Cheap Ticket Scam:
more than once
On July 28, according to the official WeChat account of Xicheng Police News, the police successively received reports from the public that they had been deceived by buying tickets for Universal Studios Beijing online.
The Xicheng Public Security Bureau has arrested the criminal suspect Zhan Moumou (male, 35 years old), who confessed to defrauding other people's money in the name of being able to buy the "half-year card" of Universal Studios Beijing at a low price.
At present, Zhan Moumou has been criminally detained by Xicheng Public Security Bureau in accordance with the law, and the case is under further investigation.
Subsequently, the official response of Universal Studios Beijing has never authorized any other third-party platforms, merchants or individuals to sell Universal Studios Beijing Summer and Autumn Roaming Cards, and there is no internal discounted price.
The Universal Studios Beijing Summer and Autumn Roaming Card adopts the real-name system for ticket purchase and ticket inspection when purchased through official channels, and cannot be resold or transferred.
According to incomplete statistics from the Red Star Capital Bureau, the scam has defrauded more than one million yuan in total, and a single person was defrauded of more than 600,000 yuan.
This is not the first time a low-price ticket scam has occurred at a theme park, as Shanghai Disneyland has seen similar cases before.
According to the Shanghai Rule of Law News, the Chongming District People's Court of Shanghai held a trial in the case of "Disney employees" helping to buy tickets at a low price and made a first-instance judgment. Zhu was sentenced to 5 years and 8 months in prison for fraud and fined 10,000 yuan. At the same time, Zhu was ordered to refund more than 370,000 yuan to several victims.
Low price temptation:
Trust after tasting the sweetness
Transactions take place in a variety of different channels, and the same is the temptation that each ticket is hundreds of dollars cheaper than the original price.
Universal Studios Beijing officially opened in September 2021. It is the first theme park in China and the fifth theme park in the world by the American Universal Theme Park Resort Group. It is also the largest Universal Studios in the world.
In the early days of the opening of Universal Studios Beijing, Beijing maintained its No. 1 search volume on Ctrip for several weeks.
Nearly a year after its opening, the popularity of this park is still continuing, and the corresponding admission price ranges from 528 yuan to 638 yuan per day.
In July 2022, Universal Studios Beijing will sell limited summer and autumn roaming cards, that is, unlimited tickets with a validity period of at least half a year. Official standard tickets (excluding elderly and children tickets) are priced at 1,350-2,450 yuan.
On the Internet, transactions on this half-year card have already begun.
The Red Star Capital Bureau found that after the Spring Festival in 2022, consumers have successively purchased single-day tickets for Universal Studios at about 150 yuan, 200 yuan, and 350 yuan, and they all successfully entered the park.
After some consumers tasted the sweetness, the more expensive Universal Studios half-year card debuted.
A deceived consumer explained that the single-day ticket purchased for 360 yuan before was no problem for admission verification. When he heard that there was a preferential half-year card, he didn't even think about paying directly.
A consumer who has successfully used the discounted single-day ticket said that the discounted tickets he purchased in the WeChat group called "Beijing Fun Discount", the group owner will also release discounted tickets for projects including Beijing Happy Valley, Water Cube, etc. The normal use of these discount tickets by group friends has also strengthened his trust in the group owner.
According to reports, low-cost half-year cards are priced at 500-800 yuan, and appear in many sales channels.
A consumer told the Red Star Capital Bureau that someone in his group buying group organized the sale of this low-cost card until 7:00 pm on July 28, the day before the Beijing Xicheng Police News issued a notice, and there were still friends in the group asking about it. half year card.
Most of the people who paid did not wait for the preferential half-year card.
A number of deceived consumers said that the group owner or card seller basically used the excuse of the epidemic and waiting in line to continuously postpone the card application time, accompanied by the phrase "if you believe it, wait, if you don't believe it, you can get a refund".
When consumers realize that they are wrong and ask for a refund, only a small number of people get their money back, and most people have lost contact with the seller.
Many agents have also been slaughtered
It is not only consumers who are deceived, but also the agents in the middle.
Netizen "Mai Mai" told the Red Star Capital Bureau that the information that he has learned from various sources is that Beijing Universal Studios has never opened this ticket type to any travel agencies and agents, and it has always been an official direct sale, "I guess those groups that organize group purchases The owner was also deceived. The reason why these group owners were deceived may be related to the successful consumption of a single discount ticket before.”
A ticket agent said that only after this incident did they know that the special single ticket sold by Zhan Moumou was not a real special price, but Zhan Moumou bought it at a price of more than 600 yuan, and sold it as a special ticket to downstream or consumption. It was because of this that many voter representatives believed Zhan Moumou.
"Special price single tickets have been sold for half a year, just to make money for this annual card. Many people who have been deceived this time are intermediate ticket dealers. They didn't refund the money to themselves, and they had to refund (money to) customers."
There are also some intermediaries who said that they did not make any profits from consumers, but only helped others to purchase, and the money was directly transferred to Zhan Moumou, and now there is no way to get a refund.
The Red Star Capital Bureau noticed that currently searching for "Universal Tickets" on Xianyu, Xiaohongshu, Weibo and other platforms, there is no information about the sale of half-year cards. Asking the seller is also said to have no tickets, and most of the remaining links are It is indicated that you can purchase Universal Studios VIP Express Pass, that is, "Guide Service + Excellent Express Pass".
It is understood that the "Usutong" of the day can also be purchased on official channels such as the Universal Studios APP. The price of each item ranges from 160 yuan to 190 yuan, but the popular items on the official APP are generally "sold out".
An agent told the Red Star Capital Bureau that he had other channels to order "Usutong", "You see that the official website sells it, but you may not be able to buy it. I can play it here 100%." The agent offered The price is also higher than the official website price. For example, the “Usutong” price of 4 items is packaged at 1,200 yuan, and the maximum consumption is 760 yuan according to the official website price.
In this regard, the agent said that the recent summer ticket volume is tight and difficult to grab, and the price has risen accordingly.
Another agent told the Red Star Capital Bureau that the package purchased must include a tour guide.
A guide is required to reduce the queue time.
When the reporter asked if it was "Usutong", the agent did not answer directly, but emphasized that each project can be played in about 20 to 30 minutes accompanied by a tour guide, and each tour guide will bring 1 to 3 tour guides each time. family.
Chengdu Business Daily-Red Star News reporter Wang Tian
Intern reporter Cheng Luyang
Can the stolen money be recovered?
Experts pointed out that the half-year-long plan, first subsidized money to let consumers taste the sweetness, and then sold a large number of cards for profit, made this scam have the characteristics of "killing pigs".
Shi Xin, a lawyer from Beijing Yingke (Hefei) Law Firm, told the Red Star Capital Bureau that the previous small-value special price card was used as "pig feed" and the social platform was used as a "pig sty". Sexual investment of more half-year card fees, in order to "kill pigs" to defraud money.
At present, Zhan Moumou is under criminal detention by Xicheng Public Security Bureau on suspicion of criminal offense. How should the responsibility of the agent be defined?
Shi Xin said that whether an agent constitutes a criminal offense depends on whether the agent has the intention of committing a common crime, that is, whether he knows that Zhan is committing a crime of fraud under the guise of selling low-priced tickets, and actively joins in and negotiates with Zhan to distribute benefits. .
It can be judged whether the two parties have the intention to commit a joint crime through the agency contract between the agent and the upstream seller, WeChat chat records, call records, the agent's own statement, Zhan Moumou's confession and other objective evidence.
If you know it, the agent is suspected of a joint crime of fraud; if the agent and Zhan have committed a joint crime, the case is a criminal case, and the two must bear criminal responsibility, return the stolen goods and refund the consumer.
If the agent does not know whether the upstream seller has the ability to perform, because there is no fault, it will not constitute a criminal crime, but it may be liable for civil return, and if it refuses to return, it may be suspected of embezzlement.
At this time, there are two situations: if the relationship between the agent and the buyer is an agency procurement contract, according to the rights and obligations between the two parties, and based on the relativity of the contract, it cannot be used as "the card purchase fee has been transferred to Zhan Moumou or others." , I am also a victim” reason to refuse to return; if the agent is a well-intentioned and beneficial behavior and does not charge fees, the end consumer cannot claim the return.
Shi Xin also said that the simple middleman did not make any profit and was also deceived.
If the card purchase fee is in its hands, it has the obligation to return it; if the money is in the agent or Zhan, it has no obligation to advance the money.
In addition, in this incident, many intermediaries stated that they would transfer money directly to Zhan Moumou, "Private transfer will not affect the result of rights protection, but will affect the process of rights protection and evidence collection. A large amount of card purchase fees may have been transferred by the suspect's consumption, even if the public security organs pursued the payment. It is difficult for the victims at the end to obtain full compensation for the money and goods involved in the case.”