LACEY TOWNSHIP, NJ – Knowing that COVID-19 presents a rich opportunity for fraudsters to take advantage of many government assistance programs, Lacey Police reported three incidents this weekend. Fraud is on the rise in America as there has been easier access to loans, online filing options for many social programs and the possibility for IRS scams to take advantage of those in trouble. Frauds are getting rich off these scams, but federal and local officials continue working to capture those criminals.
- Theft — On Friday, September 11, 2020, at 7:05 p.m., Officer Dallas Gant responded to police headquarters for a report of identity theft. The complainant reported that she received an email from Bright Lending indicating that her loan application was being processed and then an email stating that her loan has been approved. The victim reported that she did not apply for the loan. The victim also contacted her identity theft security company, Bright Lending, and the Federal Trade Commission.
- Fraud – On Tuesday, September 15, 2020, at 3:43 p.m., Officer Jason Lee responded to the 900 block of Lacey Road, in reference to a report of a phone scam. The victim reported that a woman who identified herself as Linda Brooks, from the Internal Revenue Services (IRS), contacted her. The victim also reported that “Linda” knew her social security number and told her that the IRS for an unknown reason is investigating her. “Linda” then instructed the victim to transfer money from her savings account to her checking account and purchase multiple gift cards. Lisa stated “Linda” wanted her to provide her with all the gift card numbers and pin numbers to resolve the investigation. The victim did not purchase the gift cards and immediately reported the incident to this agency.
- Fraud – On Tuesday, September 15, 2020, at 6:35 p.m. Officer Patrick Watkins responded to police headquarters in reference to a report of fraud. The victim reported that she received a notice in the mail from the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development regarding an unemployment insurance claim in her name, which she did not file. She also later received a letter from the NJ Department of Labor with a Bank of America pre-paid Visa/Debit card with her name printed on the card. The victim is in the process of contacting the NJ Department of Labor to report the incident to their fraud department.
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Shore News Network warns customers and readers of a new fraud. A man with an extensive history of fraud in Ocean County has publicly boasted about contacting our clients and readers. Please be careful if this man calls you and keep your guard up. We advise not taking his call. See why below.