Hamilton police have charged two Bronx, New York residents with stealing nearly $10,000 from an elderly township resident through what’s known as a “grandparent scam.”
Such scams involve fraudsters targeting victims pretending to be grandchildren needing money due to an emergency.
In this case, a township resident received a call March 1 from a person pretending to be her nephew, who said he’s been arrested for drunken driving and striking a pregnant woman, and needed cash to get out of jail, police said.
Then, another man got on the phone claiming to be the nephew’s attorney, from the Legal Aid Society in Manchester, New York, and told the victim the nephew would need $9,800 to take the case. The victim obtained the money and the “attorney” said he be sending someone to the victims home.
Two hours later, a man and woman arrived at the victim’s Hamilton home and collected the cash in a hand-to-hand exchange, Hamilton Detective Lt. Manish Gautam said.
The victim realized she’d been duped and called police. An investigation by Detective Nicholas Schulte led to suspects Raul Santos-Marte, 39, and Karina De Los Santos-Polanco, 34, as the people who collected the cash. He charged each with theft by deception over $500 and they surrendered to police on Monday, March 21.
Authorities in New Jersey have arrested Bronx residents in grandparent scams in January in Ocean County, in December in Monmouth County, and last April a Bronx man was sentenced to prison in Middlesex County for scamming eight senior citizens out of $142,900.
More information on and how to protect yourself from ‘grandparent scams’ can be found by clicking here.