Recurring “Jury Duty Scam” reported in Sweetwater County

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The Wyoming Highway Patrol reports a scam alert that is particularly cruel around the holiday season.

SWEETWATER COUNTY — Swindlers are once again calling people and falsely identifying themselves as law enforcement officers and threatening arrest for supposedly evading jury duty, according to the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office.

Callers are instructing their would-be victims to purchase e-vouchers or reloadable debit cards for between $750 and $1,500 at stores such as Smith’s, then call what appears to be a Wyoming number (are code 307) for further instructions.

The same fake Wyoming number will also appear on the victim’s caller ID.

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Those “instructions” will be to provide the voucher or card number, at which point the money is lost. Scammers use a technique called “masking” to make it appear as if they are calling from within Wyoming, when in fact they are at the other end of the country or even overseas.

Lowell pointed out that first of all, no agency of the criminal justice system is going to call to demand money or payment for fines, missed jury duty, overdue traffic tickets, etc.  If you receive a call like this, make a note of the agency or department that the caller claims to be with and also note the number that appears on your caller ID.

Next, hang up, then follow up, using the information you’ve noted. Check with the organization the caller claimed to be with. And most important of all, NEVER provide such a caller with any personal or financial information.

For more information on this and many other fraud schemes, law enforcement officials recommend the FBI website at http://www.fbi.gov/scams- safety/fraud.