Absecon police warn of impostor targeting residents

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ABSECON - The Absecon Police Department has issued a warning to city residents to be aware that a male phone caller is pretending to be an Absecon officer in an attempt to steal money.

The caller conned a city resident out of $500  by convincing the victim to forward the money on a Green Dot Card, according to a statement issued by Absecon Police Sgt. Robert Ponzetti.

The Absecon Police Department advices residents that the IRS does not contact people via phone to collect any money for back taxes, Ponzetti said.

“If you receive a call from anyone posing as an IRS agent or even any type of Federal or local law enforcement officer and they demand money especially by sending money on a Green Dot Card or Western Union this is a scam,” he said. “Criminals utilize these methods because they are very difficult for police to follow up on. Wiring money is like giving cash—once you send it, you can’t get it back. If you are not sure if the call is a legitimate call, contact the agency to verify the caller’s demands.”

Ponzetti offered these tips to avoid becoming a victim of a scam:

Resist the pressure to act quickly.

Try to contact the agency that is being stated or your local police department to determine whether or not the call is legitimate. 

Never wire money based on a request made over the phone or in an e-mail...especially overseas. Wiring money is like giving cash—once you send it, you can’t get it back.

For information on current scans, go to the FBI web page under “Frauds from A-Z.”

See http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/frauds-from-a-to-z 

Ponzetti said an Oyster Bay resident received a call at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, June 27 from a caller posing as an IRS agent. The call went to the victims voice mail. The caller told the victim that he needed to pay $500 via a Green Dot Card in order to avoid being arrested for owing back taxes.

The victim did not respond, Ponzetti said.

However, the victim then received a second call from a man who posed as an Absecon police officer and requested the same demand.

The victim found out he had been the subject of fraud when he called the Absecon Police Department to see if the payment had gone through.

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