Colorado Attorney General issues alert to consumers on threatening twist to grandparent phone scam

By Erin Lamb
Special to The SUN

A popular telephone scam targeting older citizens has taken a threatening new twist.

The grandparent scam is often perpetrated when an older adult is called by someone pretending to be a grandchild or relative. The caller may claim they were arrested in a foreign country for drunk driving or were involved in a car accident. They ask the potential victim to send money so they can return home safely and not to tell anyone so they don’t get into more trouble.

Recent national reports have indicated that the callers are now demanding money to be sent immediately in order to free a kidnapped relative. The callers are threatening physical harm to the relative if funds are not delivered. Victims are often ordered to stay on the phone until the ransom money is wired. The requested ransom payments range from $600 to more than $1,900 and are often sent to a third party. Some reports have stated that even after the payment was made, the scammers claim it wasn’t received and demanded additional funds.

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This story was posted on July 9, 2015.