Loads of cash destined for Kelowna scam artist intercepted | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Loads of cash destined for Kelowna scam artist intercepted

June 21, 2019 - 1:48 PM

KELOWNA – A Kelowna woman was saved $40,000 by investigators with the RCMP's Federal Serious and Organized Crime section.

A Kelowna woman in her 60s, reportedly received an unsolicited phone call from a fraudster claiming to be from the “fraud department” of the woman’s financial institution. The unknown caller told the woman that her personal bank accounts and credit cards had been compromised, Kelowna RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Jesse O'Donaghey said, in a press release.

The scammers then convinced the woman that they were working alongside the RCMP in an effort to catch the fraud suspect. The victim’s co-operation in their ongoing fraud investigation was then sought by someone who identified them self over the phone as a police officer, who promised the woman cash rewards from her bank for her assistance.

“Under the direction of the suspects, the victim downloaded software applications to her computer, which authorities believe allowed remote access to the woman’s computer and in turn her online banking information,” O’Donaghey said.

The con artists then tasked the victim with making countless cash withdrawals totalling $40,000 and purchases of $38,000 worth of Google Play gift cards at various locations across Kelowna. The victim later discovered that the money being deposited into her account, to make those purchases and withdrawals, was being transferred from her other accounts and credit cards as cash advances.

“Thankfully our partners with (Federal Serious and Organized Crime) in Surrey were able to intercept two packages containing $40,000 dollars in cash, sent by our victim and destined for a Lower Mainland address,” O’Donaghey said.

The police investigation remains ongoing at this time, as the victim continues her efforts to seek compensation for her loss due to the purchase of thousands of dollars in gift cards.

This unfortunate situation serves as an important reminder to trust your instincts.

“It’s important for the general public to know that the RCMP would never ask someone to cooperate in a police investigation in this manner, nor would a victim be offered financial compensation,”  O’Donaghey said. “RCMP also encourage the public to consider verifying a police officer’s identity, if they are dealing with them over a phone. It can be as simple as calling their detachment’s non-emergency line or their police dispatchers.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Kathy Michaels or call 250-718-0428 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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