Chief Brian A. Kyes announced today that the Chelsea Police would embark on a local campaign to address the ongoing scams that primarily target the elderly and members of the Latino community.
These scams prey on the fear of these victims by threats to do violence on family members living back in their home country or conveying that they will be arrested for not making a payment to the IRS or the Social Security Administration. These are the main scams affecting the community, but there are many other variations. (please refer to link below)
The scam is initiated by a phone call and threatening or placing the victim in fear to wire or transfer money electronically by Western Union or other wire transfer service and in doing so their family member will be released, or their debt will be forgiven.
The Chelsea Police will visit all of the businesses in the city that provide a “wire” service and instruct the clerks to look for signs of these scams. They will be taught to ask specific questions if they observe signs of fear or confusion on any transfer of money. The Chelsea Police will also ask the business to display a PSA poster directing the potential victim to call the police immediately before making any transfer.
Chief Kyes stated, “Unfortunately we are notified by the victim when it is too late, and after the money has been transferred.” He added, “We hope that our local business that provides wire services will partner with the Chelsea Police and act as a line of defense to prevent these scams that are financially devastating to those victimized”
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