Scammers have upped their game in yet another round of attempts to rip-off residents of Clark County, using the courts as bait. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department today, notified the court of a new round of rip-offs aimed at unsuspecting individuals who are targeted with a false claim of an arrest warrant for failure to appear on a Grand Jury summons.

According to correspondence from the LVMPD Financial Crimes Bureau, the scammers recently targeted a physician who was threatened with arrest for failure to appear on a Federal Grand Jury summons.

“The public should know that the court never calls on the phone or emails to solicit money or personal information under the threat of arrest for missing jury duty,” said District Court Chief Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez. “These scams are very sophisticated and persistent problem. We want to make the public aware of them and ask that those who get this this warning pass it along to friends and family so that they don’t fall victim.”

Different variations of this and other similar scams regularly surface in our community. Senior citizens are a favorite target of the scammers. A very official sounding scam artist usually calls unwitting victims and claims to have a warrant for their arrest for skipping jury duty. They offer up a few details that appear to check out through a cursory Internet search, such as the name of a judge or other official. Then the criminals get the victims to purchase a pre-paid credit card for hundreds of dollars to clear the warrant they claim they have. Within minutes, the scammers cash in on the cards and rip-off the worried victims.  These scams also come in the form of an official looking email.

Don’t fall for these rip-offs and be aware that the court never calls on the phone to solicit money or personal information. Report the crime to law enforcement and spread the word to friends and family.

Top three point to know about these scams

  1. The court never calls or e-mails people to get personal information such as their social security number. Those who receive these e-mails or call should not respond and are advised to contact the Attorney General’s office or the LVMPD Financial Crimes Theft Crimes Bureau.
  2. A key red-flag is the request for money or a pre-paid credit card. No official representatives of the court will call to solicit money for any purpose.
  3. Be wary of phone calls or emails that look like a jury summons and request important personal information including: date of birth, social security number, driver’s license number; and threatens a fine or prison for failing to respond.