SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Scams happen every day, but this one was a close call involving an 80-year-old victim.
According to the Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office, the Shreveport victim received a phone call by someone claiming they were with the IRS. The caller said he had an arrest warrant issued for the victim for not paying her taxes, and threatened that her Social Security payments would be affected if she didn’t pay immediately.
As instructed, the woman went to her bank and got five cashier’s checks, each with the amount of $7,500. She then dropped off the checks for delivery to be shipped to Tampa, Florida. After dropping them off, she contacted her daughter and told her what was going on. The daughter then contacted the Caddo- Shreveport Financial Crimes Task Force. They advised the woman and her daughter that they should try to go and get the checks back quickly before it shipped for delivery.
The victim was able to get her checks, that totaled to $37,500, back from Federal Express before it delivered to the scammers.
“People lose their life savings falling for these scams. Just today, our office has received nearly 50 calls by people who have been contacted by these thieves," says Caddo Sheriff Steve Prator.
“Sometimes they say you owe money and must pay right away. Other times they say you are owed a refund and ask for your bank account information over the phone. Don’t fall for it,” the IRS warns.
According to its website, the real IRS will NOT:
- Call you to demand immediate payment. The IRS will not call you if you owe taxes without first sending you a bill in the mail.
- Demand tax payment and not allow you to question or appeal the amount you owe.
- Require that you pay your taxes a certain way. For example, demand that you pay with a prepaid debit card.
- Ask for your credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
- Threaten to bring in local police or other agencies to arrest you without paying.
- Threaten you with a lawsuit.