JPD investigates extortion plot

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) Some crooks are pretty desperate to get your personal information and your money.

    JPD reports in the past three weeks they have received complaints of at least five scam attempts that involve telephone fraud and harassment.  One of the scams involved a utility company, another person posed as a court employee over the phone, and multiple calls were received by a person trying to impersonate at JPD employee.

    Wednesday the scam attempts entered into the realm of extortion.

    A female called a Juneau woman at her job and told her she had missed jury duty.  This would never occur, especially over the phone.  The scammer said since the female had missed jury duty a warrant was out for her arrest and she was instructed to turn herself in at JPD.  She made the mistake of answering questions of a personal nature while she was flustered and driving to the police department.  Among the questions were her cell phone number.

    Soon afterward, a male suspect used that cell phone number to call the victims family and tell them that she had been abducted and demanded ransom.  He told the female's parents that they were holding her for ransom and made threats to harm her if they did not meet their demands.

    JPD said no funds changed hands and everyone is safe.  They encouraged the public to protect their personal information carefully, especially over the phone.  If you have any doubts as to the authenticity of a phone call, hang up and call that company directly on a published telephone number.

    Common scams and fraud schemes along with tips to avoid becoming a victim of fraud may be found on the FBI’s website: https://www.fbi.gov/scams-and-safety/common-fraud-schemes. The FBI also takes telephonic and online reports of financial fraud.

    Online reports of suspects pretending to be government employees, family members, friends, and several other imposter situations may be submitted to the Federal Trade Commission at: https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/

    Financial Fraud may be reported online at: stopfraud.gov

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