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Sunday, May 1, 2016

New scam surfaces in county

Monday, November 5, 2007

Shirley Pollom was pretty sure what she received in the mail was a scam.

She just didn't think she'd receive three letters from the same company in a week's time.

The letters informed her she was a category winner of a lottery, which had been randomly drawn Oct. 5, 2006.

The letter stated she was entitled to a "payout of US $700,000 payable to you by bank draft or bank certified check."

In addition, the letter stated she was required to "pay a processing fee of US $3,000."

The mailings also came with checks worth $4,500 each.

Each letter asked her to contact a fee agent and a claims agent for further instructions on how to claim her winnings.

But when Pollom contacted her "claims agent," she said the conversation didn't last long.

"They were supposed to send me something," she said. "I wasn't going to give them anything. They were after my money."

Pollom said she spoke with the claims agent and had difficulty understanding him. He promptly hung up during the discussion.

Two of the letters came from Laurel, Md. The third letter came from Dallas and all three letters came within one week of each other.

Clay County Sheriff Mike Heaton said he's aware of several scams throughout the county.

"There's been so many," Heaton said. "If you think it's a scam, it probably is."

Heaton said he has heard of something similar to this possible scam. Typically, he refers any type of possible scam to the Indiana Attorney General's Office.

"(Scams are) just ongoing," Heaton said. "There's very little we can do at a local level."

Attorney General's Office Press Secretary Stacy Schneider said the office was not aware of this particular scam. However, it sounded like similar ones it has dealt with in the past.

"Those kind of scams, they run the gamut," she said. "Those are fairly common unfortunately.

"Some of those checks look very authentic. But most people recognize this as a scam."

Heaton said those who may deal with possible scams should never give out personal information over the phone and should never cash any checks that they receive without looking into them first.

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