A new style of con is spreading across South Korea and it could cost you thousands of dollars.
Korean con artists carefully select a vehicle to run out in front of and pretend to get injured by the supposed collision with the car.
They make a scene, the police arrive, and it usually becomes the con artists word against the drivers.
Con artists target specific individuals who appear to be new drivers, those who drive as their job, those violating a traffic law such as speeding or failing to pay attention to the road, truck drivers, or ladies under the presumption the police will perceive as inferior drivers.
The more experienced scammers work in groups so that the person pretending to be hit by the car has witnesses that confirm their story. This forces individuals into a position where they pay the fraudster to prevent further legal action.
Many con artists have extorted thousands of dollars from unsuspecting drivers who usually want to avoid getting the police or courts involved.
Another scammer in Chungcheong Province made 18.6 million won($17,200) by extorting from 16 victims. A more sophisticated group rented a car as a prop for this con and managed to extort 30 million won and repeat this scam 7 times before police caught them.
There are many more cases where the police have caught fraudsters such as these.
Dash-cam footage obtained by the Korea Observer from the public domain demonstrates men aggressively jumping onto the bonnet of a slowly moving car and smashing the windscreen with their hand before rolling off the bonnet and yelling as if they had been run into.
Other footage from YouTube clearly shows some lazy scammers who lack the enthusiasm to make a substantial effort. Several dash-cam clips show Korean scammers running toward a stationary car. They then lay on the bonnet or on the ground in front of the vehicle.
When the scammer tries to argue that they were hit, the driver often points at their dash-cam and the offender runs away.
One fellow who tried this scam was not so lucky. He can be seen to pretend to fall in front of a Korean lady driving a small car. She then accidentally drives over the top of him. He can be heard screaming in agony while she slowly continues driving in disbelief that a speed bump had somehow got under her car.
Those engaging in this scam face up to seven years imprisonment or a 15 million won fine.
It is essential that any expat driving in Korea have a dash-cam to avoid being unfairly sued for hitting pedestrians.