According to the group, the suspect, a certain Mr. Lim, was able to sweet-talk them into buying pieces of expensive-looking jewelry for half a million pesos.
"Maganda naman actually 'pag tinignan 'yung items. Akala namin totoo kaya napabili rin kami," said one of the victims.
The victims said aside from selling them the items at discounted prices, Mr. Lim also gave them free pendants as a "goodwill gesture."
Mr. Lim, who introduced himself as Filipino-Chinese, is reportedly the owner of Cuiman Qing Yuan Jewelry Club.
According to the report, the group later found out that the jewelry were made from cheap alloys used for dentures and glass cut and shaped to resemble gems.
"Yun nga kasi yung husband ko, suot-suot yung ring tapos one time nalaglag yung bato. So nung tinignan ko siya, parang nagduda na ako, dinala ko sa jewelry shop," said the victim.
"Ang sabi sa amin white gold daw siya ta's na-discover na hindi siya white gold, yung parang panlagay sa ipin, yung parang metal," she added.
Lara, another victim who was brought to the shop by a tour guide with her fiancee, bought a gemstone bangle with a certificate of precious stones identification card that turned out to be worth six times less than what they paid for it.
"Ang nabili kasi namin is worth P65,000 eh. Kumbaga, ang dapat na presyo lang nun is mga P10,000," Lara said.
The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has already been informed of all cases and has vowed to assist the victims. —Rie Takumi/KBK, GMA News