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Scam on the rise involving checks

Reported by: Susan Parker
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Updated: 2/28/2014 6:40 pm
TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -- District Attorney Trent Kelly and Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson say don't fall victim to check scams.

"We can tell you up front it's a scam. Don't wait to become a victim of it," Sheriff Johnson said.

Each one of the checks displayed on a sheriff's department table came from the victim of a scam.

"By the time we get it, they're out $3,4-6,000 dollars. And, then they realize this money I was promised is not coming in and now, I'm gonna report it," Sheriff Johnson added.

The scam usually begins with a request for help depositing money. A money order plays a big role.

"They're sending a money order to a person asking them to deposit the check into their account. Once the check is deposited [they are asked] to send $1,300 of the $1,500 that the cashiers check is for and keep $200 as commission and then the check doesn't clear," Kelly said.

The most vulnerable are the elderly and the poor.

"It is absolutely heartbreaking because there's nothing we can do to get them their money back and a lot of them can't afford it to start with-which is why they fell for the scam in the first place," Kelly added.

If you should receive any type check or money order that is unsolicited, contact your local law enforcement office.

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