Local elderly woman robbed with Lotto scam
HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. (WSVN) -- Several South Florida senior citizens have been conned into giving thousands of dollars to scam artists who claimed to have a winning lottery ticket.
Most recently, in Pembroke Pines, according to police, a store surveillance security system caught a woman wearing a green shirt approaching an 83-year-old woman. "They're targeting the elderly," Dani Moschella spokesperson for the Broward Sheriff's Office, said. "So again and again we see people approaching the elderly in public and convincing them with whatever the story is to hand over money."
Just last week, the suspect in green claimed to be a lottery winner and told the victim she was an illegal immigrant who needed help cashing the ticket. The suspect's accomplice, also seen on surveillance cameras, wore purple.
Video shows the three speaking with each other before the victim took the suspects on a $6,300 shopping spree on good faith they would reimburse her. Surveillance also captured the women at the Best Buy at nearby Pembroke Lakes Mall, JCPenney and leaving Wal-Mart.
The victim even took the scammers to a bank to withdraw $8,500. This case is just one of several recent incidents. "We had an incident in July involving an elderly female victim," Moschella said. "They actually pretended to call the lottery office. We've developed a composite sketch of a suspect who we're still looking for."
Police in Hallandale Beach are also currently searching for a man and a woman with the same scam methods. "She was exploited for her money, being an elderly person, people who are one of the most vulnerable people in our society," Hallandale Beach Police Captain Pedro Abut said. "She was defrauded out of $11,700."
Surveillance video shows a man walking into a store, shortly followed by his accomplice. She referred to herself as Veronica. Video later shows the two suspects leaving with the 71-year-old victim.
"If anybody comes up to you asking for money, don't give it to them," Moschella said. "If you have elderly relatives, talk to those people as well. Let them know about these scams."
"If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is," Abut said. The three women were targeted and scammed out of more than $30,000.
BSO wants to warn you about these commonly used scams:
If you have any information on these crimes, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.
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