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Williams Lake seniors warn of separate scams

Charlie Simmons lost almost $4,000 to a telephone scam this week. - Monica Lamb-Yorski photo
Charlie Simmons lost almost $4,000 to a telephone scam this week.
— image credit: Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

Two local seniors are warning the public about recent scams.

Mona Kavanagh received a cheque in the mail for $3,994 congratulating her for being hired to work as a mystery shopper.

“I was supposed to deposit the cheque in my account and then send $1,000 Western Union transfers to two different people,” Kavanagh said.

Knowing immediately it was a scam, Kavanagh ignored the offer, but decided to warn other people so they don’t fall victim.

“I’m 78 and could have used another job,” she chuckled.

Charlie Simmons wasn’t as lucky. Earlier this week he was scammed of $4,000.

He received a call from a lawyer claiming Simmons’ granddaughter was in jail, charged with drunk driving and hitting someone.

“He had one of those voices that could melt your heart,” Simmons said of the scammer.

On two separate trips to Western Union, Simmons transferred money to a Barbara Parker in Ontario.

“I have to say, that Western Union tried to stop me, but I told them to do what I told them to do,” Simmons said. “When I went back the third time they outright refused, telling me something wasn’t right.”

It wasn’t until Simmons saw his granddaughter’s husband’s vehicle parked at work that he realized something was wrong.

“Why would he be at work if his wife was in jail?” Simmons thought.

Western Union has a flyer aimed at protecting people from fraud.

“You should not proceed with transactions if it is to a grandchild, friend or family member for an emergency situation you have not personally confirmed,” the flyer warns.

 

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