Scam letters target senior citizens - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Scam letters target senior citizens

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By Jim Wallace - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –  Investigators say more people fall victim to scams during the Holidays, because they are desperate for cash for gift buying. That's why you may be flooded with scam come-ons in the next ten days.

Investigators say there is no Christmas spirit from these scam artists, saying they are more like vampires. Sheriff's Investigators say they know one scam letter flooded Dougherty and Lee County senior citizen's homes this week, and they worry it's genuine looking enough to fool some people.

The scam letter says it's from Trust Network, Incorporated at the top, and comes with a check for more than three thousand three hundred dollars. It says you as a customer of Walmart or other common store have won a $63,000 sweepstakes.

Dougherty County Sheriff's Office Captain Craig Dodd said, "I think because it has the signature and the approved stamp on it, and the gentlemen's picture on it, it makes people think everything's ok."

The winner is told to cash the check and send almost $3,000 back to pay some fee or tax, and then you get the $63,000. Of course if you send them a check, you will find out in two weeks their check is counterfeit.

 It's a common scam, but Investigators say too many people still fall for it.   "I've seen people lose thousands of dollars doing this," Dodd said.

Investigators believe the scam is run out of Nigeria, because many of the words in the letter are mis-spelled, and the language old English. Three senior citizens have brought these letters to Sheriff's Investigators in two days, one woman had her bank stop her when she tried to cash it.

"They are preying on our senior citizens and billions of dollars go out of our country every year to these people. Who are frankly something like vampires in my opinion."

Dodd said they worry the volume of these scam letters in South Georgia could have many senior citizens fall for the con. He says this time of year the number of these scams skyrocket, because people fall for them, and the vampires are ready if you slip up.

One other way you can often spot a scam letter; the envelope has a Canadian post mark. Another good way to know it's a scam is, if you did not enter a contest or lottery, you are not going to win it.

Dodd said if you have received this scam letter, just shred it. And if you get a check that you really think could be legitimate, but you have a question, take it to your Sheriff's Office and have them take a look.

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