A press release from the Pickens County Sheriff’s Department stated one victim lost over $2,000 thanks to a scam. The victim received a letter from someone representing themselves as “National Shopping Consultants” offering employment as a “mystery shopper.”
“The victim received a check that appeared legitimate, proceeded to make purchases and sent an amount by money gram to someone in Atlanta before being advised by her bank that the check was fraudulent,” the report stated.
In another case, a 78-year-old victim received a telephone call stating she had won $495,000 in a sweepstakes, according to the report. In a later phone call, a male stated he was a U.S. Customs agent and told the victim she would have to wire $2,870 in Customs Tax prior to receiving her check. The victim wired the money. Then in a later call, the same man said she needed to send another $4,950 plus another amount for insurance. According to the report, the total scammed was $12,770, but a wire transaction for another $14,850 failed to complete.
A third case involved a 69-year-old female who met someone on www.seniorpeople.com. The man stated he did work in Nigeria and needed money to ship his construction equipment to the jobsite, according to the report. Within the next three months, the victim was convinced to send him a total of over $70,000, the report stated.
“The old sayings – ‘that nothing in life is free’ and ‘if it’s too good to be true then it’s probably not true’ – are good advice for all of us,” Stone said. “There are as many ways for scammers to try to get your money as there are people. Always be aware and contact a family member or law enforcement if uncertain before letting go of your hard earned money.”
Anyone suspicious of being scammed should call the Pickens County Sheriff’s Department at 898-5500 or 898-2603.