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Hard to believe, but it happens

One can easily say that the lady in the front page story about the scammers should have known better.  She should have known not to believe the story that the man with the Jamaican accent told her about her winning a quarter-of-a-million dollars and a brand new SUV through an online lottery that she had played.  She should never have followed his instructions and sent money to him or his courier 50 times over the past 8 months.  She should have known better after he told her that one of the payments was for the new ‘Hypocritical Tax’ imposed by the president.

Yep.  One can easily say that in a broad sense.  Circumstances may dictate differently, though.
This senior citizen who by all counts is as nice and sweet as anyone else you’d ever meet, and who has probably worked her entire life to save up enough for retirement, believed that the man called Angel was truly an angel – just with a big pay day.  He played the part like a pro, even mentioning detailed information about certain places in Hazlehurst and around the region.  He even told her that HE was a man of God and was being truthful about her winnings and the money she needed to send him.  After all, the lottery company was going to refund every bit of it, he said.

She’s not the only victim in Copiah County, unfortunately.  Many other senior citizens in our area have sent money away, thinking they would get it all back, plus hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars.  I’ve even received a phone call here at my office claiming I had won a million dollars a while back. The guy, who also had a Jamaican accent, told me all I had to do was go purchase a Green Dot card and take it to Claridge Inn in Hazlehurst, and someone would meet me there to get it.  “Your money will then be wired to you after the fees are paid,” he proclaimed in an accent akin to pirates of lore.

“Oh?” I asked.  “Well, if I bring a few of my police buddies with me over there, will your courier still be there to pick up the green card?”

Promptly, he hung up.  Haven’t heard back since.

He certainly is no angel.

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