Police fraud detectives in Los Angeles say the telemarketer con artists are preying on Senior Citizens in California.
Here is there method of operation. (MO) These crooks are located in storefront operations in Canada across the border from the U.S. These con artists call Senior Citizens and tell them they have won a prize in a sweepstakes or some type of contest. They say you do not have to pay any money to get your prize. In some cases the prize is $20,000 cash, or it is a new Cadillac vehicle. The crooks say that they can send your new Cadillac to your home as soon as you give them the state tax number to prove that you have paid your prize tax. They tell the Senior Citizen that they cannot collect the money for the state but they can tell you how much the tax will be. In the past the tax on the new car was about $400 to $500 dollars.
If you tell them you want them to send you the prize, they will tell you that the state tax collector’s office will call you about the amount of tax that will be due. The con artist says as soon as you give them the tax I will have your new car delivered to your driveway. He says “how many people can get a bran-new $50,000 Cadillac for just the tax which will be about $400.” He says, but I cannot release the car until I get that tax number from the state, it’s the law. These crooks work in tandem one convinces you that you have won the prize and the other calls you with the amount of so-called state tax you much pay.
The second crook calls the victim in just minutes. (That should be a Red Flag, how many state offices would respond that quickly?) He tell the victim that they can transfer the money from their bank checking account or use their ATM and the prize will be released immediately. If the victim pays the so-called state tax he or she will get a final call telling them the new car will be delivered tomorrow afternoon and that someone needs to be at their home to sign for the car or the cash prize. But it is all a rip-off.
California detectives say their hands are tied because the jurisdiction on these criminals is in Canada. These detectives say the Royal Canadian Mounties are working on these telemarketing crimes. The Mounties say they have not been able to catch these crooks because they stay in a storefront for only a week at a time.
You can fight back by never giving your bank checking number or ATM number or any financial information to any telemarketer who calls. And the State Tax Office does not collect tax for telemarketers over the phone. Just tell them to send the prize and it is your responsibility to pay the state tax. If they say they must have proof that you paid the tax, tell them to send you proof that you have won the prize and then you will contact the state tax office. If you stay on the line and talk to them they will continue to try to con you into sending the money. Remember these crooks are Con Artists.