A woman dubbed the Evil Landlord by Taiwan’s media turned to cheating foreigners after she became too recognizable to locals due to continuous media exposure.
Zhang Shujing has a long history of defrauding tenants, and owners, from which she sub-leased properties. As well as crimes related to leasing properties, Zhang also has an extensive criminal record related to underground banking, loan-sharking, intimidation, violence, and embezzlement.
In the latest case, Zhang used fake pictures of upscale accommodation to lure foreign travelers. Zhang then rented cheap accommodation of a much lower standard and charged the travelers an exorbitant price. Afterwards, she even demanded a refund from the property owner. Showing up to demand the refund was her undoing, as local hostel staff immediately recognized her as the infamous fraudster.
According to United Daily News, Zhang charged two Malaysian tourists $4,500NTD ($150USD) per night and housed them in a $1,200 ($37USD) per night hostel, pocketing the difference. She then demanded the hotel owner refund the money she paid. The angry hostel owner called the police.
According to a recent Apple Daily report, Zhang’s lack of fear of justice was due to her ex-boyfriend being a high-ranking member of the Heavenly Way Alliance gang. The report also claimed Zhang turned to cheating foreign travelers due to too many people recognizing her, and also figured foreigners were unlikely to sue her.
Liberty Times Network reported that the Malaysian tourists had come to Taiwan to spend New Year’s Eve. The hapless travelers were told by Zhang that the advertised accommodation was unavailable and that she had found alternative room ‘with a 60-inch TV screen and a massage chair in the room’. She then directed them to a budget hostel in Yonghe District. The tourists said they had no choice but to accept the situation as they were in an unfamiliar environment.