Woman Loses Nearly $10K In Scam Despite Warning

PORTAGE, Ind. (CBS) — A scam came between an elderly Northwest Indiana woman and nearly $10,000 of her money.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Felicia Middlebrooks reports, the 72-year-old woman was warned by a Western Union employee about scams against the elderly when she made two large wire transfers to the Dominican Republic. But she didn’t heed the warning.

On June 7, the Portage, Ind., woman received a call from a man she thought was her grandson. The man said he was in the Dominican Republic and had been in a traffic accident, and he would be put in jail if he didn’t pay $4,200 for the damage to the other vehicle and court costs.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Felicia Middlebrooks reports

The day after the woman wired the money to what she thought was her grandson’s attorney, a man claiming to be that attorney called and told her the other driver was injured and planned to sue for $5,300. He told her that her grandson would be jailed until the claim was paid, so she needed to send money again.

The man also told her the people at Western Union may question her about the large sum of money but warned her she could not legally tell them why she was wiring the money because it involved a criminal matter, so she would have to make up a reason.

When the transaction went as the man told her it would, the woman told police, she told the Western Union employees that she was investing in property.

It was only when the woman contacted her grandson more than a week later, on Friday, annoyed with not receiving a thank-you for keeping him out of jail in a foreign country, that she learned she had been scammed.

Altogether, the woman sent $9,500. With fees, her loss totaled $9,977.

The Northwest Indiana Post-Tribune contributed to this report, via the Sun-Times Media Wire

  • victoria Coppolino

    I I wish I knew how old the writer of this story was. To call a 72 yr. old wman ELDERLY!!!. Then what do you call a woman in her eighties?? I am 73 yrs. old, work, drive and babysit my grandchildren. And go dancing once in a while.

    • Lazy eye guy huntin squirrels

      Yer right. He should have called her an old fart.

    • Over the hill

      Elderly = Senior Citizen; generally anyone 65 or older.

    • jess

      Well, seeing how the average life expectancy is 78, I would say 6 years shy of that is definitly elderly.

    • Cornyia Carter

      OLD…is what your are….get over it! Aren’t you alive? What are you then? someone should scam you….

  • tom Sharp

    Anyone sending money to the “third world” without a lot of proof of legitimacy is a moron, “elderly” or not!

  • John

    Anyone who falls for this scam after all the times we have heard and read about it over the last 20 years is definitely senile and should be referred to as “elderly.” I’m amazed that you people have survived long enough to reach that age. Come on, people, use some common sense!

  • dale

    “A sucker born every minute” applies here

  • heynow

    Someone give me her number. I am actually her Father and my car broke down in Nigeria. I need $5000 for repairs, or the lions will eat me.

  • MR>D

    it was those dirty gypsies blame them for all crime th dressey are all short and fat with long

  • watcher

    it was those d gypsies blame them for all crime they are all short and fat with long dress’s

  • Ian

    As soon as I get the FIVE MILLION DOLLARS promised me from the widow of a Libyan who was connected to Gaddhafi, I’ll give that woman her 10,000 back.

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