Five men have been detained as part of an operation to stop phone scams on retirees. Judicial Investigation Police agents have detained five U.S. men who are suspected of running a scam that has robbed U.S. senior citizens of $9 million. The scam took place through a call centre and is sadly not the first of its kind.
The suspects were arrested as part of simultaneous raids on Wednesday on the West side of the San Jose area. The Judicial Investigation Police believe the suspects ran the scam through a San Jose call centre and deliberately targeted vulnerable individuals. Calls were made to residents of the USA and victims were told they had won a sizeable cash prize which they could then claim once wiring a refundable fee to a bank account in Costa Rica.
The detainees have been identified by their last names, Dodt, Jordan, Fink, Nastasi and Sniffen. It is believed that there was a sixth member of the group, a woman, and she remains at large.
The victims were all believed to have been over 55 and retired citizens of the USA. After being conned into paying the initial fee the targets were then told that the prize had been increased and they would need to wire additional refundable money. This money was supposed to cover higher taxes and larger insurance before they received their prize.
The con dates back to 2010 and transfers from the USA into the scammer's account lasted until 2014. The sums paid ranged from $500 to $1850. The extradition process could take up to six months, commented the Judicial Investigation Police.