Social media 'scammer' accused of profiting from Tianjin explosion

Scam artists in China wasted no time cashing in on the tragedy in Tianjin by grafting donations from social media users with news family members died in the blast.

Emergency crews continue to sift through the devastation caused by Wednesday night's massive blast that killed at least 50 people and injured more than 700.

The damage from the chemical plant explosion is extensive and has been compared to a nuclear bomb, and authorities expect the death toll to rise.

But as the fires continued to burn and smoke hung over the city, one girl apparently told her thousands of online followers she was not able to contact her father, Sina News reports.

The blast had apparently left the high school student orphaned after her mother died earlier, and donations began to flow to her.

One user investigated the matter and called the girl a fraud, telling her to freeze the donations before the account changed its name.

But she soon returned to defend herself, telling her followers "I am not a liar" and stating she would find a way to the return the money.

It is not clear whether the generous social media users have received a refund at this point or if father is safe – or real.

Fires are continuing to burn nearly 48 hours after the explosion with a military team of chemical investigators heading to the site.

News break - August 14

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