BSO Identifies Phone Scam Suspects, Calls On Victims To Come Forward
A well-documented phone scam has resurfaced in Broward County, and the Broward Sheriff’s Office is notifying residents of suspects who were identified after a rash of calls involving this scam occurred in Broward County in early September. The scam involved callers impersonating actual BSO deputies, requesting money and threatening arrest for “active” warrants that didn’t exist if the money wasn’t paid.
The recent scam involved suspects impersonating current BSO deputies and spoofing the BSO Courthouse Control Room phone number. Spoofing occurs when someone disguises a phone number to assume the identity of a trusted, credible source. A victim receives the spoofed call from the BSO number, and the scammer say the victim needs to pay a surety bond in cash through a bail bond company to avoid arrest on outstanding charges. Suspects used two bail bond companies, one near the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale and the other in Dania Beach. The bail bond companies were unaware and not involved in the scheme.
During the month of September, BSO received over twenty reports from multiple individuals, mostly female medical professionals, who received calls from the BSO number. Unfortunately, several people fell victim to the scam, which resulted in losses in the tens of thousands of dollars.
Upon learning of the fraudulent calls in Broward County, detectives began investigating the origin of the calls and developed leads that resulted in learning that the suspects operating in Broward County were also known to have previously been in Pennsylvania a few weeks prior. After teaming with authorities in Pennsylvania, BSO detectives developed further information that the suspects were currently operating the same scheme in Texas. Working in conjunction with authorities there, the suspects in the Pennsylvania and Broward County phone scams were identified as they were preparing to leave Texas. As a result, evidence was collected in Texas which suggests that there are still several citizens in Broward County who have not yet reported being victims in Broward County.
If you fell victim to this scam, please report the incident to the Broward Sheriff’s Office Dania Beach Criminal Investigation Detective Mike Marotta at 954-518-0158. BSO’s Dania Beach Criminal Investigations Unit and the Public Corruption Unit are leading the investigation and working with the Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office and authorities in the state of Texas.
Please be aware that BSO will never call you to ask for money or personal information, demand bond money or any form of payment. If you receive this type of call, do not provide any personal information or money. Instead, immediately hang up and contact law enforcement.