Scam artists have been out in full force on telephones and the Internet recently, the RCMP learned last week.
On Feb. 6, Creston RCMP were brought into the picture when a local female reported she was the victim of an on-line “secret shopper” scam. She had signed on to an Internet invitation earlier, Cpl. Monty Taylor said on Monday, and received a cheque in the mail.
“She said she took it to her bank and was told it looked legitimate, so she deposited it,” he said.
Soon after, she was directed to send three of her own cheques via Western Union to New York addresses. As well, she was told to visit a Wal-Mart store, buy $100 worth of merchandise, then fax some forms reporting her experience.
When the complainant got a call from her bank that the cheque had bounced, she put a stop payment on her cheques, but some had already been cashed.
Investigating officer Const. Dave Skretting called several phone numbers associated with the scam. In one conversation, a female said she wanted to call him back using a blocked number, then hung up when he refused.
In another call, a male with a thick accent said what he was doing was legitimate, then attempted to recruit Skretting into the scheme, saying he could make $10-20,000 a month.
“You would be calling me ‘sir’, you would be making so much money,” he said. “We could work magic together.”
The investigation continues.