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News Release

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Media Relations

Beware On-Line Scam

Los Angeles: The purpose of this notification is to alert the public of the latest widespread computer on-line scam circulating throughout the city:

Individuals are searching computer websites, particularly “Craig’s List”, seeking employment.  Once the unsuspecting individual submits their resume` to what appears to be a legitimate company, they receive a congratulation notification which purports to hire them immediately.  Later, they receive an official package through the U.S. Mail or other private express shipping companies containing printed counterfeit checks, money orders, or cashier’s checks with a note that the enclosed monies is payment for services paid up front.  

They are also told to deposit the checks into their personal account and keep a percentage for their services.  The individual is instructed to wire a specific dollar amount by Western Union services to various locations.  In all cases, the alleged companies are out of the country; however, the addresses on the printed checks, money orders, or cashier’s checks are located in the United States.  

Anyone attempting to cash counterfeit checks, money orders, or cashier’s check, are subject to arrest and prosecution.  

Some recipients have admitted that they were not given a specific job description and were aware that most employers do not pay you before services are rendered.  
 
Detectives are asking the public to use caution and due diligence when applying for employment on-line.  Ask specific questions regarding the job duties and wages.  Anyone with information on this scam or receiving suspicious on-line employment should call Detective Yvonne H. Parker at Commercial Crimes Division of the LAPD, at 213-485-4131.  After hours or on weekends, calls may be directed to a 24-hour, toll-free number at 1-877-LAPD-24-7 or by texting CRIMES (274637) and beginning the message with the letters LAPD.  Tipsters may also submit information on the LAPD website  www.lapdonline.org.  All tips are anonymous.


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