The Chesterfield Police Department is warning residents, especially the elderly, to be on the lookout for fraud after scammers tricked a resident into wiring money overseas as part of a scam.
The incident occurred on Dec. 12 when police say an unknown subject convinced a Chesterfield resident that they had won a cash prize. The individual than wired an undisclosed amount of money overseas in order to claim the prize. Chesterfield Officer Mike Ryffel explained how such scams usually work.
"Someone calls and says they won a great deal of money but they have to wire the taxes and transfer fees to a foreign address first," he said. "Once it happens, there is not a whole lot that can be done."
Because of this, Ryffel is advising people to take steps to protect themselves.
"Never wire money to anyone you don't know," he said. "If someone is told they won a contest, ask for paperwork or verification to be mailed first. Otherwise, don't believe it."
Such scams often target the elderly and can be even more devious. For example, in November, an older Chesterfield resident fell prey to a scam that involved faking the arrest of a grandchild. The individual was told their grandson had been arrested in Mexico and needed to have money wired overseas to bail him out.