6 Accused of Scamming Seniors Out of Nearly $250K

6 Accused of Scamming Seniors Out of Nearly $250K

(USNewsBreak.com) – Bad actors typically look for ways to separate people from their money. Con artists and scammers often target vulnerable populations, such as older people, who they believe make good targets. One of the most common methods they use to coerce people to pay involves calling and pretending to be in an emergency situation needing money. Authorities recently arrested six people in Florida for allegedly carrying out so-called grandparent scams.

On Monday, June 24, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody announced that authorities had arrested six people on suspicion of fraud. The suspects included Gennesis Castro, Jairo Izquierdo, Ada Tido, Wendy Angelina Ortiz, Olfa Cornielle, and Wandy Castro.

The suspects allegedly called seniors pretending to be attorneys representing their grandchildren. They then conned the elderly victims by spinning a fabricated story and pressuring them into sending money, according to authorities. They would allegedly instruct them to bring that money to a box, which rideshare drivers then picked up and transported to an arranged location. Authorities claimed they managed to bilk victims of nearly $250,000.

Prosecutors have charged all six of the suspects with multiple first-degree felonies, including grand theft, criminal use of personal identification, and organized scheme to defraud. Moody said the criminals used the grandparents’ willingness to “do anything to help a grandchild in need” and “used fear and family to extort” the victims.

The fraudsters extorted some victims more than once, robbing them of tens of thousands of dollars. Some even paid more than $50,000 as the criminals told them the charges in the cases against their family members kept increasing due to developments in the cases.

Multiple law enforcement agencies cooperated in the investigation, resulting in the arrests of the six suspects. The crimes occurred in several counties, including Palm Beach, Brevard, Sarasota, Broward, Lee, Orange, and Miami-Dade. Moody thanked the agencies for contributing “to shut down this far-reaching grandparent scheme.”

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