Citrus County Scam Alert: You've won the lottery

2:57 PM, Jan 28, 2014   |    comments
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 PDF Document: Scam Letter

Citrus County, Florida -- A new scam has been making the rounds and into residents' mailboxes in Citrus County.

The sheriff's office says it has had an influx of reports from citizens who have received a letter from Global Investments Inc. out of Canada notifying them they have just won the "International Shoppers Lotto Powerball". Included in the letter is an authentic looking check.

READ: Fake lottery letter (pdf)
PHOTOS: Citrus County hit with lottery scam

The scam works as follows:

  • A citizen will receive a letter in the mail from Global Investments Inc. out of Canada which has a letter with the title "Heritage Financial Group" on the top.
  • This letter states the recipient is a declared winner of the "International Shoppers Lotto Powerball".
  • Included is a check from the Silicon Valley Bank in Palo Alto, CA. This check amount can range from $3,000 to $5,000.
  • The letter includes instructions to call a claim agent and pay the government taxes on your winnings.
  • The claim agent tells the recipient to deposit the check at their bank and call him/her back.
  • The claim agent tells the recipient to mail him/her a check to cover the government taxes which is approximately $1,895.
  • Once the check is mailed - the claim agent stops payment on the original check which the recipient has already deposited into their account.
If you receive a letter like this, the sheriff's office says you should not call the claim agent named in the letter and do not cash the check. So far, everyone who has received a letter figured out it was a scam, so no losses have occurred.

Anyone who receives these letters should remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If you feel that you have had a similar experience, please contact the Citrus County Sheriff's Office at 352-726-4488.

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