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PA State Police Warn of Phone Scam
By Pennsylvania State Police
December 20, 2013
The Pennsylvania State Police has been alerted by other law enforcement agencies in the
Commonwealth in which victims have received phone calls stating that they have a relative who was in
danger. The callers have stated the relative was either taken hostage or involved in a minor accident.
During the course of the calls, the suspect told the victim they must pay $2,000 or their relative will be
harmed. The callers possessed some background information on the victims and in one incident, knew
the victims’ brother’s name, work location and cell phone number.
Investigations into the various incidents have determined the calls originated from Puerto Rico and were
made using a pre-paid cellular phone. Although the calls emanate from outside the country, the caller ID
on the victim’s phone typically displays a local number. No suspect has been identified at this time. It is
unknown how the suspects acquired the victim’s personal information.
Anyone who has received this type of telephone call should report it immediately to the Pennsylvania
State Police or to their local police department.