Lethbridge Regional Police are warning the public about a phone scam where the caller impersonated an LRPS officer in an attempt to solicit funds.
On Oct. 30, 2012 police received a complaint from a local resident who was contacted more than a half dozen times over the past two days by a caller claiming to be an officer with the Lethbridge Regional Police Service.
The caller provided a fake name and fake badge number and told the man that he had won $2 million from a lottery sweepstakes several years ago, but had been defrauded the money. The caller claimed an investigation was underway, arrests had been made and police were trying to return the winnings to the man, but he would have to pay $35,000 in order to get them. The man was also warned not to tell anyone about the money or it would compromise the investigation.
No banking or personal information was disclosed and the man did not forward any funds.
Police advise the public that this is an advance payment fraud. Claiming to be a police officer or associated with law enforcement is not a new tactic and has been used in the past in other jurisdictions in an attempt to lend credibility to the scam.
In a real investigation where money is seized, the owner would be notified by police but officers will NEVER request money in advance for any reason.
Police remind the public never to send funds to strangers and always be wary of prize pitch schemes where you are asked to send money up front in order to claim your prize.
Anyone else who may have been contacted in this manner is asked to contact police at 403-327-2210.