Same Warrant SCAM with a Different Twist – Don’t Fall for It!
Law Enforcement will NEVER call/email Demanding Payment for a Warrant
The Spokane County Sheriff’s Office and Spokane Valley Police continue to receive reports of scammers trying to lie, intimidate, trick, and threaten people into giving up their hard-earned money or personal information, leaving them vulnerable to identity theft.
Unfortunately, scammers continue to change their stories and methods as they look to terrify victims and steal their money.
Recently, a victim (40s) called to report that these predatory scammers tricked him, and he lost over $8,500.
In this scam, the victim reported receiving an email stating he had an “Order of Arrest Warrant” from the U.S. Court of Central Judiciary District of Washington. In the email, the scammers referred to the case as USA vs. (Victim’s Name) and stated he must pay the amount to avoid going to jail. This fake scammer email was sent from a “SpokaneCountySheriffandcourt”, a fraudulent email address.
The Deputy taking the report advised the victim that this was a scam and even checked the victim’s name, which did not show any active warrant for him.
The victim stated he thought it was real and paid over $8,500 through two different methods. One was through an Apple Pay account, which was combined with his bank account. He also paid through a “Cash App” which he explained was a Cryptocurrency app.
The Deputy, looking at the receipts, believes the payments were made to a blind (hidden) company, and no suspect information was found.
The victim was also advised to contact his bank immediately to inform them of the scam and to see if they could stop/freeze any of the payments and protect his account from any future fraudulent charges.
PLEASE understand law enforcement, the courts, government agencies, or any reputable businesses will NEVER call/email, or contact you demanding payment while threatening arrest or some other form of punishment.
If you are threatened with arrest and told you must immediately pay an amount using specific pay methods, especially prepaid credit cards, cryptocurrency, Apple Pay/Apple gift cards, or any other unique financial transaction, you ARE talking to a scammer! Hang up and do not provide them with any information.
If you are unsure, hang up and call the agency or business directly using a number you researched and verified. DO NOT use the numbers the scammers provide you! You will only be calling the scammer back.
For more information about protecting your privacy, identity, and online security, including how to report phishing emails to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), along with other scams and consumer information, go to the FTC website https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/ or the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) at https://www.ic3.gov/.