- Wednesday September 1st, 2010 :: 07:06 p.m. PDT
Extortion / Phone Scam
Recently, it was reported by a Grover Beach citizen that a male suspect called them on their cell phone and said they were a federal agent with the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration). The male suspect had an East Coast or Southern accent and he informed the citizen that they were being investigated for purchasing illegal drugs via an internet pharmacy. The suspect advised the citizen that their home was under surveillance and a warrant would be issued for their arrest if they did not immediately send $3,500.00 via a Western Union money transfer to an undisclosed location. In this particular case, the suspect strongly encouraged the citizen not to hang up the phone while they withdrew their money from a local bank and drove to a nearby supermarket where there was a Western Union transaction center.
The suspect used high pressure tactics and referred to legal codes in order to bolster his claims as a federal DEA agent. Fortunately, the citizen did not wire the money and the phone call was terminated.
The Grover Beach Police Department would like to caution anyone receiving these types of fast paced, high pressure phone calls from persons posing as federal agents or law enforcement officers. It is certainly not routine or acceptable for a peace officer to accept bail money via a Western Union money transfer. If a call like this is received, the receiving party should immediately terminate the call and report it to their local law enforcement agency.
Citizens can also report the scam to the following DEA hotline number: 1-877-792-2873
Grover Beach Police Department
711 Rockaway Ave
Grover Beach, CA 93433