Pig Butchering Scams – The New Romance & Investment Scam Combination Sweeping The World

An Evolution In Romance Scams

A SCARS Insight

Pig Butchering Scams?

What is that? It is the New Combination of Romance Scams & Investment Scams

This new variation of scams began to immerge in 2020 and originated from China.

The scam involves building a relationship, often romantic, with a victim before convincing them to make a fraudulent investment. The victims are often well-educated women and the amount of money stolen tends to be significant.

PLEASE NOTE: This Article May Contact Offensive Terms. It Is Presented Only To Help The Reader Understand The Nature Of This Scam Type And How Scammers View Their Victims – We Apologize For Any Offense In Advance

The New Scam

A scamming strategy called “pig butchering” that started in China is spreading beyond both border and language, transforming into a global fraud racket. It is also called “Kill the Plated Pig” scam in Chinese.

According to one organization, the primary victims of the scheme outside China are Chinese nationals or ethnically Chinese people living in Southeast Asia (this is the problem with listening to amateurs). However, the reality is that more than a third of the victims are non-Chinese people in North America and Asia, showing how the demographic targeted is rapidly expanding.

This type of scam is called “sha zhu pan” in Chinese, or “pig butchering” in English.

The scam involves the fraudster building a relationship, often romantic but not always, with the victim over months, akin to fattening the pig, before convincing them to invest money into a fake venture, slaughtering the animal.

How It Works

Online scammers try to build months-long relationships with their victims before convincing them into fraudulent investments.

70 percent of the victims of ‘pig butchering’ scams were usually women.

The losses can be very significant, averaging US$98,000 based on current reports.

Unlike traditional romance scams, most of those who fell for “pig-butchering” scams were people in their 20s and 30s who have a decent education, with nearly 90 percent of them holding a bachelor’s degree or higher.

“The immense scale, professional training, and organized operation behind each scam are astonishingly sophisticated!”

“The most successful perpetrators are irresistible online conversationalists who are incredibly well-versed about life and finances in the cities and countries they target.”

The scam left about a third of the victims in debt, and over 40 percent lost more than half of their net worth, various reports say.

These scams have become common in North America as of late 2020.

“It far too often destroys the lives of people who had bright futures at the prime of their careers – draining bank accounts, breaking families, straining marriages, derailing life goals and triggering suicides”

“Pig butchering” was first reported in China in the early 2010s, but it spread like wildfire after 2018 because Chinese scammers took advantage of ethnically Chinese people interested in the gambling industry in Southeast Asia.

The Relationship To Gambling

Casino gambling is illegal in China, except in Macau. Southeast Asian countries like the Philippines, Cambodia, and Singapore became attractive gambling destinations for Chinese nationals.

In the Philippines, gambling websites called POGOs (Philippines Offshore Gaming Operators) target Chinese nationals gambling online and have become big business, and a headache for Filipino authorities.

Sophisticated fake corporate operations, largely made up of people of Chinese descent, targeted these Chinese nationals by asking them to place bets on their fake website, where they would never receive any payout for their “winnings”.


The demographic has expanded in recent years and the scams are no longer confined to online gaming platforms or Chinese nationals.

There is no official data on the number of pig butchering scams busted in China each year, but figures from some local governments suggest they are rampant.

Recently, Beijing police busted an 18-person gang based in Myanmar who tricked more than 50 victims across China out of nearly 10 million yuan (US$1.55 million), according to Beijing Daily.

Last year in Changsha, the capital city of central China’s Hunan province, police arrested 270 separate online scams that stole over 500,000 yuan (US$77,300). Half of them were love-investment scams, the city’s public security bureau said in January.

According to the report, the cases are difficult for police to prosecute, partly because scammers have leveraged the anonymity and lack of jurisdiction provided by cryptocurrencies.

“The scammers would not have been so successful without the technology and services of the digital ecosystem, yet victims and their immediate families are left to bear the entire costs of the scam and resulting debts to banks, lending agencies and loan sharks.”


We can only warn you not to accept investment advice from someone you only know online. Fake news, urban legends, and fake investment advice should never be considered.

If you become a victim of one of these scams report it at once to your local police – specifically to their Fraud Detectives. Then to your national police or the FBI at www.IC3.gov, and also on www.Anyscam.com so it goes our through the SCARS network.

We also recommend that you use the SCARS RED BOOK to fully record a record of this crime to aid in reporting it to the police. You can obtain your copy of the SCARS RED BOOK Scam Organizer at shop.AgainstScams.org

After the scam is over, please read our guides for new victims here! You may also want to join one of our professional SCARS Scam Victims’ Support Groups on Facebook. Contact us and we will place you in a qualified group.

SCARS Publishing Self-Help Recovery Books Available At shop.AgainstScams.org

Scam Victim Self-Help Do-It-Yourself Recovery Books

SCARS Printed Books For Every Scam Survivor From SCARS Publishing

Visit shop.AgainstScams.org

Each is based on our SCARS Team’s 32-plus years of experience.

SCARS Website Visitors receive an Extra 10% Discount
Use Discount Code “romanacescamsnow” at Checkout

Always Report All Scams – Anywhere In The World To:

Go to reporting.AgainstScams.org to learn how

U.S. FTC at https://reportfraud.ftc.gov/#/?orgcode=SCARS and SCARS at www.Anyscams.com
Visit reporting.AgainstScams.org to learn more!