A Shuswap couple reported having fallen victim to a family emergency telephone scam. (File image)

Shuswap couple fall victim to family emergency scam

Person claiming to be couple’s son said he was injured and in jail

A Shuswap resident reached out to police after falling victim to scam phone call from someone claiming to be a loved one in trouble.

Chase RCMP Sgt. Barry Kennedy said the detachment was contacted by the victim on Nov. 24. She explained to police how earlier that day her husband received a phone call from a person who was crying. Pretending to be the couple’s son, the caller said he’d been in a bad accident in Mexico, was injured and in jail, and that his lawyer would be calling.

“Although her husband noticed that the voice didn’t sound like their son, he assumed it was because the caller claimed that he was injured and was crying,” said Kennedy. “The ‘lawyer’ phoned, stating that $3,000 needed to be sent as soon as possible – to have their son released immediately from jail. Otherwise he would be held for a month.”

The ‘lawyer’ guided the couple through the process of sending money by MoneyGram at the post office.

Kennedy said the couple’s son had been in Mexico recently but, at the time of the phone call, they weren’t aware he’d already returned home.

Read more: Romance, fraud make up key ingredients in latest Shuswap scam

Read more: Salmon Arm resident targeted in phone scam demanding Bitcoin payment

“The complainant realized too late that they were victims of a scam,” said Kennedy.

Family emergency scams such as these are known to police. Those who receive a call from someone claiming to be a family member of friend in desperate of money is encourage to do the following:

• Resist the urge to act immediately, no matter how dramatic the story is;

• Verify the person’s identity by asking questions that a stranger couldn’t possibly answer;
• Call a phone number for your family member or friend that you know to be genuine;

• Check the story out with someone else in your family or circle of friends, even if you’ve been told to keep it a secret;

• And don’t wire money, or send a check or money order by overnight delivery or courier.

If you think you’ve received a scam call, contact law enforcement authorities or the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

RCMPScams

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Corsac the cat is up for adoption at Critteraid.
Critteraid hosts three adoption Sundays

More than 40 cats looking for their forever homes

Abigail McCluskey is in the Netherlands training to compete in the World Cup next month. She joins 12 Canadian speedskaters for the international competition later this month. (Dave Holland CSI Calgary)
Penticton speed skater in Netherlands for World Cup

Abigail McCluskey will be skating the long track in the international competition

Summerland Middle School
COVID exposure at Summerland Middle School

The person who tested positive was at school Jan. 11

Justin Kripps of Summerland and his team have competed in Olympic action and World Cup competitions in bobsleigh. (Jason Ransom-Canadian Olympic Comittee).
QUIZ: Are you ready for some winter sports?

It’s cold outside, but there are plenty of recreation opportunities in the winter months

A map released by the BCCDC on Jan. 15 shows the number of new COVID-19 cases reported for each local health area between Jan. 3 and 9. (BCCDC Image)
Salmon Arm and Vernon see increase in new COVID cases, curve flattening elsewhere

The rate of new cases is levelling off in Kelowna, Penticton and Revelstoke.

When people talk about Blue Monday, they really mean Seasonal Affective Disorder, according to CMHA Kelowna. (Pixabay)
CMHA Kelowna offers tips for managing winter blues during COVID-19

CMHA says it’s important to take care of mental well-being during these times

Powell River-Sunshine Coast MLA Nicholas Simons was appointed to the NDP cabinet as minister of social development and poverty reduction after the October 2020 B.C. election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. job training fund increased for developmentally disabled

COVID-19 has affected 1,100 ‘precariously employed’ people

A heavy police presence near Penticton Secondary last Thursday, Jan. 14 was due to an erratic driver, a woman, 28, who was arrested. (Brennan Phillips Western News)
RCMP arrest impaired driver who rammed car near Penticton school

A 28-year-old woman was arrested at the scene

RCMP stock photo (Black Press)
Kelowna church fined a second time for violating public health order

Harvest Ministries in Kelowna has previously said they will fight the tickets in court

Okanagan Forest Task Force clean up took place on May 9 along Postill Lake Road. (Okanagan Forest Task Force)
Okanagan cleanup taskforce gears up for new year

The crew assisted in getting about 60 illegal dumpers ticketed

Bastion Elementary was open Monday, Jan. 17, after one case of COVID-19 was confirmed among the school community. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
COVID-19 case confirmed at second Salmon Arm elementary school

Member of Bastion Elementary community self-isolating, students allowed to attend school

B.C. driver’s licence and identity cards incorporate medical services, but the passport option for land crossings is being phased out. (B.C. government)
B.C. abandons border ID cards built into driver’s licence

$35 option costing ICBC millions as demand dwindles

sdf
2nd in-school violence incident in Mission, B.C, ends in arrest

RCMP notified of local Instagram page with videos (now deleted) showing student assaults, bullying

BC Emergency Health Services has deployed the Major Incident Response Team (MIRRT) as COVID-19 positive cases rise in the Williams Lake region. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
B.C.’s rapid response paramedics deployed to Williams Lake as COVID-19 cases climb

BC Emergency Health Services has sent a Major Incident Rapid Response Team to the lakecity

Most Read