POSTED: Monday, January 31, 2011 - 5:48pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, February 1, 2011 - 8:06am
EL PASO – Just a month after El Paso police sent out a notice, warning people of recent scams, a woman and her son say they have joined the list of fraud victims.
Luis Fernandez said back on January 20th, his 74-year-old mother received a phone call from a supposed family member, who referred to her as “aunt,” but would not identify himself. The woman then guessed it was her nephew, “Rito.”
“My mom dropped the name 'Rito' and he said, 'Rito,' and from there it went,” said Fernandez.
Then the man posing as “Rito” said he needed money because he had just gotten into an accident.
“He says, I got into an accident and a little girl got hit with glass. I think an ambulance is coming to get her soon,” said Fernandez.
Fernandez then claimed the man over the phone asked for $1,500, but assured his mother that he would pay the money back. Fernandez said he and his mother were worried about the man's well-being, and in a sense of urgency, sent the money via MoneyGram. After doing that, Fernandez said he got an eerie feeling.
“When I got back, I felt worried...I told my mom, 'mom, I don't recognize my cousin's voice,” said Fernandez.
Fernandez said he reached out to MoneyGram, and filed a report with El Paso police.
“The detective told me it's unfortunate, but because this happened in Mexico, we can't do anything,” said Fernandez.
Fernandez said this should be investigated, and wants people to be on the lookout for fraud, because the man who duped him, was very convincing.
“Those people use a lot of psychology. They are very believable,” said Fernandez.
A spokesman with El Paso police said because the offense occurred outside their jurisdiction, there's not much they can do. Police have received numerous complaints from people, reporting scams like these. They urge people to verify the accuracy of information before sending money to anyone.