FBI Denver
Public Affairs Specialist Deborah Sherman
(303) 630-6060
July 18, 2016

Scammers Trick People into Paying for Allegedly Missing Jury Duty

Old Scam Has New Twist: Con Men Use Actual Names of Wyoming Judges and Law Enforcement

The old jury scam has been hitting residents in Wyoming hard over the last couple of days with a new twist. Now, when the cons call posing as the sheriff or U.S. Marshal, they’re armed with facts. The scammers use the actual names of the law enforcement officials and also name the actual judges on the bench in case you search the Internet to check. That’s been enough to convince several residents in Wyoming to pay up and ultimately lose hundreds of dollars.

Multiple people have made complaints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s resident agencies in Wyoming about the calls. The victims say they were told there was a warrant out for their arrest for missing jury duty and must pay $500 over the phone with a Green Dot card.

“No law enforcement official will ever call you on the phone, demand money, and ask you pay with a Green Dot card,” said FBI Denver Special Agent in Charge Thomas Ravenelle. “If you ever hear anything like that, hang up, because it’s a scam.”

Warnings about the jury scam and others that make the rounds every year can be found on the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) website.

SAC Ravenelle also advises you never provide personal or financial information to an unknown caller, even if they sound legitimate.

As a rule, court officers never ask for confidential information over the phone; they generally correspond with prospective jurors by mail.

If you’ve fallen victim to this scam, you can contact your local police department or make a complaint on IC3.gov.