Bedford Police Chief Robert Bongiorno and Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian would like to remind residents to be careful with their private and financial information as groups of individuals have been engaged recently in multiple types of telephone scams.
The arrest scams are an attempt to con innocent people out of money and identity information.
“Residents should be very careful about giving out any information to a person calling them unsolicited,” Chief Bongiorno said. “Safeguard your bank account numbers and social security numbers, and remember: when in doubt, don’t give it out.”
One scam involves an individual or group of individuals claiming to be Middlesex Deputy Sheriffs who are collecting money owed by the resident to the Internal Revenue Service and threatening arrest for failure to pay. Neither Middlesex Deputy Sheriffs nor police officers engage in money collection practices for the IRS.
In a second telephone scam, the caller pretends to be a deputy sheriff demanding money and threatening the resident with arrest for either failure to pay debts or failure to show up for jury duty. The caller says that the resident has an arrest warrant, which can be canceled if money is paid to them, usually via the purchase of a Green Dot MoneyPak card. These calls are also fake.
“The public should be assured that these calls are not legitimate,” Sheriff Koutoujian said. “No one should ever be scammed out of their hard-earned money. We want citizens to be aware of these scams so they can properly protect themselves.”
Anyone who has questions regarding jury duty should contact the Office of Jury Commissioner at 617-422-5860.
Again, police and sheriff’s deputies do not collect money,and they do not collect fees to cancel arrest warrants.
Anyone who receives calls like these should not give any personal information to the caller and should immediately report the call Bedford Police at 781-275-1212 or contact the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office Investigation Unit at 978-932-3220. Victims can also file an online complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov.