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Holden Woman Scammed Out of $400,000

HOLDEN, Mass. — Holden Police have been aiding in a Federal investigation after an 80-year-old Holden woman was defrauded of almost $400,000 this year.

According to Det. Sgt. Chris Carey, during the month of December the Holden Police Department was contacted by a Federal Agency asking for assistance in a fraud case, in which the 80-year-old Holden resident had received a letter in the mail claiming she had been awarded a large amount of money but was required to pay fees and complete paperwork before the money would be released.

The Holden resident, without the knowledge of her children, began sending money to the “company”, the name of which the HPD would not release as the investigation is ongoing.

After a while, the Holden resident received more notices indicating she will be awarded more money. This went on for close to a year during which time the Holden resident had sent close to $400,000.

According to Carey, certain groups of criminals sent out these award notices to hundred if not thousands of people, and besides the victim in Holden, there are many other known victims.

The Holden Police and the family of the Holden resident are now working together to protect her so she is not further victimized.

Additionally, the Holden Police department, along with the Federal Agency, is investigating this case and is trying to determine who is behind this scam.

“These types of scams occur every day around the country,” Carey added. “The criminals typically indicate that you must respond quickly or you will not be eligible for the prize. High pressure tactics are a clue that it is not legitimate. Other clues include winning lotteries that you never entered or sending money upfront before money is released to you.”

Residents that they or someone they know may be a victim of this type of scam are encouraged to contact the police department immediately.

Holden police have not released the name of the resident involved.

Though not prompted by the incident, the he Holden Police Department will be holding an informational class on the various scams and cons that target senior citizens.

To help residents stay on guard, Carey of the Holden Police will present information on phishing, identity theft, Nigerian scams, and other common methods employed by internet con-men.

The information session is aimed at helping people recognize these scams early. Questions and answers will follow Carey’s talk. The program is free and open to all.

The session will be held at 10 a.m. on Feb. 16 at the Holden Public Safety Building at 1370 Main St Holden MA

This class is open to everyone and there is no pre-registration needed.

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January 24, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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