Letter to the Editor: Keeping Spam from being a scam

Finally, the authorities have decided to break the back of the Jamaican scam artists who have been ripping off Americans for years with the promise of huge wealth for very little effort. I know how compelling it is to be faced with thousands of dollars of promised wealth for just a small deposit for good faith or something, but remember, older people especially– the money you will send them is real. The check they will send to you for any reason is not.
Case in point: I received a check for $30,000 from that scam, and the letter accompanying the check explained why I had received it and how to verify its authenticity. I called the police department in the city I was living in and told them about the check and if they would like to have it for reference. The person I spoke with told me not to do anything and she would send an officer over to check it out. When the officer looked at the check and noticed the telephone number to be called for reference, he suggested I call that number to find out if the check was authentic. (I didn’t say anything, but I realized this must be a very new man on the job to not realize that any number they give me to call would be someone they have in their scam unit.)
Anyhow, I wrote “scam” across the check face and sent it to my daughter to see how much money she would have had when I passed away if all I had to do was send a couple of hundred dollars to the addressee.
Older people are such targets for these people and, because they are so embarrassed when they discover what really happened to them, it is often not reported to the authorities. Before you send a dime to anyone that promises you huge rewards, call your police department and ask if they are familiar with anything like what you received. Your police should be able to tell you “there ain’t no free lunch,” so be wise and keep your own counsel and money.

J.R. Nelson
Long Beach

Letters to the Editor

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