Yolo County residents are advised to beware of fraudulent telephone calls from individuals purporting to represent a law enforcement agency or Yolo Superior Court and claiming that the person receiving the call has failed to respond to a jury duty summons.
According to the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office, callers in the current scheme claim that an arrest warrant has been issued by local law enforcement for missing a jury duty summons, and that the person receiving the call will be arrested unless a fine is immediately paid. Numerous Yolo County residents have recently contacted the District Attorney’s Fraud Unit to report these scams, according to a news release.
Authorities say the callers sound very official and the scam is well executed.
Reference to the official sounding “jury summons warrant” is designed to frighten call recipients into quickly responding when they are upset and not thinking clearly. The con artists either try to scare the victim into wiring money or going out to purchase prepaid cards, such as green dot Moneypak reloadable prepaid cards, authorities said. Scammers, they say, are trying to obtain personal information like a Social Security number or credit card number.
The District Attorney’s Office stressed that the Yolo Superior Court will always send citizens written notification by U.S. mail of any violation they might have regarding their jury summons. The court and local law enforcement agencies never ask for credit card, debit card or prepaid card information over the telephone.
Anyone who receives such a call is advised not to provide any personal information and to never wire money or purchase prepaid cards. Call recipients should verify the identity of the caller by requesting an employee identification number. Authorities also recommend asking a trusted friend or adviser for help before responding to any suspicious call.
For more information about this or other types of scams, or to report suspected scams to the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office, call the fraud hotline at (855) 496-5632, or go to http://yoloda.org/.
Call The Bee’s Cathy Locke, (916) 321-5287.