Earlier in the week we had spotlighted a story of how lottery scammers are targeting the elderly. As a follow up to the story, Connecticut Police have arrested seven people believed to be the masterminds behind the scam. There Connecticut police have managed to obtain nine arrest warrants and seven people have already been arrested.
The two outstanding warrants are for the suspected ring leader who lives in Costa Rica and an accomplice in Virginia. This came about as a result of 31 victims of the lottery fraud. So far only 31 victims have come forward though it is suspected there may be more cases that went unreported.
An approximate $165,000 have been lost through this scam alone. The scam targets elderly people across the United States between the ages of 60 and above. They call the victims and inform them of a lottery win and later seek funds to process their ‘winnings’. The fraudsters use untraceable money transfer systems such as Western Union to further conceal their real identity.
Most of the people who sent the money were asked to send more money as there was a technical issue as regards their winnings being processed. Those arrested have been charged with either money laundering, criminal intent and conspiracy at larceny. They have been let out on bonds varying from $20,000 to $150,000 depending on the charges.
Members of the public are being alerted of these scams and asked to remember that lottery officials do not ask for any upfront payments anytime you win the lottery. Do not send any money to unauthorized people. If you suspect any fraud contact your local authorities.