Welcome Guest
Log In | Register )
You last visited December 4, 2016, 9:25 pm
All times shown are
Eastern Time (GMT-5:00)

Pennsylvania man loses thousands to lottery scam

Insider BuzzInsider Buzz: Pennsylvania man loses thousands to lottery scam

Gary Young said he should have known better, but the promise of thousands of dollars clouded his judgment a bit.

Now, the North Sewickley Township man is out more than $3,500, the victim of the latest scam to target the region.

In a letter dated Dec. 15, from the purported Transmerica POS Prize Pool Lottery, Young was told that he had until Dec. 30 to claim a $50,000 prize. To claim the prize, he had to take a Transmerica check, worth $3,950, and cash it, so that he could wire money to the lottery in Halifax, Canada.

Young said he took the check to a local bank, which he would not identify, and it eventually declared it a valid check, and deposited the money into Young's bank account. Just before the New Year, Young sent $3,650, at a cost of $184, through Western Union to Halifax.

Within a few days, while awaiting the "lottery proceeds" he would never receive, Young said he was in an area grocery store, and when he tried to pay for the items using his debit card, realized he was facing a financial disaster.

His bank, Young said, learned the check was fake, so to get its money back, dipped into Young's account, and virtually wiped him out.

A chagrined Young came forward to Beaver County detectives, not only to see if they could help him recover his money, but also to warn others that you can't get something for nothing.

"You just get greed in your eyes," Young, 52, said last week. "I could see sending my son to college. I could see lots of things."

Young, according to U.S. Postal Inspector Andre Richards, is not alone in his problem.

"Unfortunately, it's very prevalent these days," Richards said.

Along with the e-mail scams asking for thousands of dollars, and phone calls seeking Social Security numbers or other personal information, Richards said that scam artists are getting hold of valid bank account numbers and using them on fake checks.

Since it takes a little longer to discover the fraud, Richards said, the checks are thought to be valid just long enough that a person could lose a lot of money before the fraud is discovered.

Banks, Richards said, are not held responsible for the losses in cases like Young's, because, he said, the customer presented it to them in good faith. Young would not discuss what steps he has taken to deal with the issue with his bank.

"Unfortunately, people say if the bank cleared it, they're good to go, and that's not the case," Richards said.

Richards said federal agents in the United States are working with their Canadian counterparts to try to stem the flow of letters, but as the scams are becoming more sophisticated, the tougher it is to stop them.

Beaver County First Assistant District Attorney Anthony J. Berosh said that even though Young did some initial research, hoping to learn whether the lottery was legitimate, the scam artists know how to stay one step ahead.

"These scams are morphing," Berosh said. "Six months ago, what (Young) did to protect himself would have been good enough." Berosh said his office is trying to see if Young can be reimbursed for any of his losses through a state program that reimburses victims of crimes.

For those who find themselves the victim of a scam like Young, Richards said, they should file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, and also report the crime to the FBI or Secret Service.

Beaver County Times

We'd love to see your comments here!  Register for a FREE membership — it takes just a few moments — and you'll be able to post comments here and on any of our forums. If you're already a member, you can Log In to post a comment.

13 comments. Last comment 11 years ago by emilyg.
Page 1 of 1

United States
Member #379
June 5, 2002
11296 Posts
Offline
Posted: January 30, 2006, 9:39 am - IP Logged

Mr Young would have been better off playing Unlucky for Life, IF it had a cash option. Stupid lottery games make people go "off the board".

    Avatar
    Englewood, Colorado
    United States
    Member #19108
    July 25, 2005
    51 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: January 30, 2006, 9:56 am - IP Logged

    It's just amazing to repeatedly read these stories of gullible people. I just don't understand how people can be so foolish as to fall for this stuff.

     The guy gets no pity from me.

      Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
      Chief Bottle Washer
      New Jersey
      United States
      Member #1
      May 31, 2000
      23260 Posts
      Online
      Posted: January 30, 2006, 10:50 am - IP Logged

      It's just amazing to repeatedly read these stories of gullible people. I just don't understand how people can be so foolish as to fall for this stuff.

       The guy gets no pity from me.

      I keep posting these stories, hoping that the gullible people out there will see them.

      You can't imagine how many e-mails I get from people who receive some stupid scam letter in the mail, and they're writing to me to claim the prize.  DUH!  Crazy

       

      Check the State Lottery Report Card
      What grade did your lottery earn?

       

      Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
      Help eliminate computerized drawings!

        gocart1's avatar - lighthouse
        ONEONTA,NEW YORK
        United States
        Member #30516
        January 17, 2006
        419 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: January 30, 2006, 11:32 am - IP Logged

        i get one of those in my email about one a week.its says its from overseas and i never played it.i just delate it always.

          Avatar
          Coastal Georgia
          United States
          Member #2653
          October 30, 2003
          1866 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: January 30, 2006, 11:39 am - IP Logged

          It's just amazing to repeatedly read these stories of gullible people. I just don't understand how people can be so foolish as to fall for this stuff.

           The guy gets no pity from me.

          I keep posting these stories, hoping that the gullible people out there will see them.

          You can't imagine how many e-mails I get from people who receive some stupid scam letter in the mail, and they're writing to me to claim the prize.  DUH!  Crazy

          Todd,

           I think it's one of the best ways to get the word out - continually posting these types of stories.

          Maybe someone will google lottery/scam/pay-to-win, or something like that and the postings will come up and save them the embarrassment and the cash.

           We have to have hope....

          DD 

           

                                         

                        

           

           

            whitmansm2's avatar - Lottery-029.jpg
            Right here...can't you see me?
            United States
            Member #21521
            September 10, 2005
            131 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: January 30, 2006, 12:43 pm - IP Logged

            There is a difference between stupid and ignorance. Stupid means you know better, but do it anyways. Ignorance means you just didn't know. With either, I hope the person learns.

            When I first signed on to eBay, I got a letter that said that someone was getting into my account. So I used the link and it asked me to sign in. I did. It asked me for the information I put in orginally, like my name and password and so on. Then it asked for my credit card that I used. I typed it in. The nexted thing they asked was for the security code on the back. THAT is what stopped me. I NEVER give that out. I know I didn't do it before, yet they asked me "again". I was so embarrased! I fell for it! Lucky for me I didn't hit enter with the credit card number yet...so I reported it. I changed passwords and everything.

            The point is, if you are "new" to something, or hear often what happens to stupid people, you THINK you're prepared. Then ignorance rears it's ugly head and hits you right in the jaw. I always heard of people getting scamed with eBay. So when I saw the email I instantly thought someone was screwing with me....I didn't think the email itself was the scam!

            I personally would never think I won something I didn't play. Lottery is easier because you know you have to PAY to win. If you didn't pay then you couldn't have possibly won! Maybe this guy signed on to a lot of drawings online and didn't remember if this is the won he signed up for or not. Maybe he thought since it cleared the bank, he's good to go. (the red flag should have been when he spent his OWN money to send it back)

            Either way, I'm sorry this happened to him. I hope others learn from it.

            No No

            Don't cry over spilled milk.  Go milk another cow!!

            Stephanie

              Coin Toss's avatar - shape barbed.jpg
              Zeta Reticuli Star System
              United States
              Member #30470
              January 17, 2006
              10347 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: January 30, 2006, 1:57 pm - IP Logged

              If it's too good to be true, it is.

              No one is going to win a lottery or a sweepstakes they didn't enter.

                lottolady24's avatar - scene sunovermountains.jpg
                New Member
                West Palm Beach, Florida
                United States
                Member #14811
                May 3, 2005
                17 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: January 30, 2006, 4:32 pm - IP Logged

                It's amazing how often people are taken advantage of by these fraudulent companies.  Whitmansm2 is right, everyone has fallen for a scam at some point in their lives.  We should consider ourselves lucky that we have enough lottery know-how to sense a scam from the get-go.   It is our resonsibility to report fraudulent emails and letters to prevent someone being taken advantage of in this way. 

                Greedy or not, no one deserves to be robbed.

                 

                 

                  Avatar
                  Sparta, NJ
                  United States
                  Member #18331
                  July 9, 2005
                  1977 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: January 30, 2006, 6:10 pm - IP Logged

                  It's just amazing to repeatedly read these stories of gullible people. I just don't understand how people can be so foolish as to fall for this stuff.

                   The guy gets no pity from me.

                  I keep posting these stories, hoping that the gullible people out there will see them.

                  You can't imagine how many e-mails I get from people who receive some stupid scam letter in the mail, and they're writing to me to claim the prize.  DUH!  Crazy

                  I would have thought the members here would be on the higher end of the intellect curve!  If an LP member falls for a lotto scam, they better keep their mouth shut and hope no one finds out.  I've seen dozens of articles on LP, and so has every one else - except the filter obssessed.  They should be smarter.

                  Cheers

                  |||::> *'`*:-.,_,.-:*''*:--->>> Chewie  <<<---.*''*:-.,_,.-:*''* <:::|||

                  I only trust myself - and that's a questionable choice

                    Avatar
                    Sparta, NJ
                    United States
                    Member #18331
                    July 9, 2005
                    1977 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: January 30, 2006, 6:15 pm - IP Logged

                    Gary Young said he should have known better, but the promise of thousands of dollars clouded his judgment a bit.

                    Buy 'em books, buy 'em books and they continue to chew on the covers!

                     

                    Cheers

                    |||::> *'`*:-.,_,.-:*''*:--->>> Chewie  <<<---.*''*:-.,_,.-:*''* <:::|||

                    I only trust myself - and that's a questionable choice

                      Avatar
                      New Member
                      Nashville
                      United States
                      Member #24091
                      October 19, 2005
                      2 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: January 30, 2006, 9:03 pm - IP Logged

                      I am sorry to say that I fell for a trick also.My notification , came in the mail. they sent me a cashiers check for $3800.00,
                      to be placed in my bank. The Bank of course sent the check back.Left me $398.00 in the rear.
                      Me with cancer I thought I had something too pay all bills and my son"s student loans off.
                      The name of the so called company is ----Money Camp International Lotto Servicesand the person I had to contact was
                      Tim Horton .-----Phone # is 1 905 598 1796.
                                                             Thank you For your comment? KJ at    jones4364@bellsouth.net

                        Avatar
                        New Member
                        Nashville
                        United States
                        Member #24091
                        October 19, 2005
                        2 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: January 30, 2006, 9:09 pm - IP Logged

                        I am sorry to say that I fell for a trick also.My notification , came in the mail. they sent me a cashiers check for $3800.00, to be placed in my bank. The Bank of course sent the check back.Left me $398.00 in the rear. Me with cancer I thought I had something too pay all bills and my son"s student loans off. The name of the so called company is ----Money Camp International Lotto Servicesand the person I had to contact was Tim Horton .-----Phone # is 1 905 598 1796. Thank you For your comment? KJ at jones4364@bellsouth.net

                          emilyg's avatar - cat anm.gif

                          United States
                          Member #14
                          November 9, 2001
                          31343 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: January 30, 2006, 10:38 pm - IP Logged

                          when in doubt check  FraudWatch International

                          love to nibble those micey feet.