Why You Don't Give Money to Total Strangers

SJPD sends out warning

If you gve a complete stranger a wad of cash, do you really expect him to return it?

San Jose police are warning community members about a scam in which two men have concocted an elaborate tale to convince their victims to fork over thousands of dollars.

The victims have all been men, ages 54-86, who were approached outside big-box stores such as Walmart, Costco and Target, police spokesman Officer Jermaine Thomas said.

Police know of eight victims so far. The most recent scam was carried out March 11 but Thomas said the crimes date back to July.

Thomas said the first con man would approach the victim and tell him he had a large amount of money he wanted to donate but was leaving the country the next day and needed to find two honest people to help him distribute the cash.

In order to do that, the victim would be asked to contribute money up front in order to receive more money later, Thomas said.

The second con man would appear and listen to the first man's story as if the two did not know each other, then disappear and come back a short time later with cash, Thomas said.

He would give the cash to the first man and the victim would follow suit. Thomas said each victim lost between $7,000 and $20,000 in the scheme.

Police have released sketches of the men, who are both described as black men who speak with an African accent.

Anyone with more information on the case, or who may have been a  victim, is asked to contact the San Jose Police Department's fraud unit at 408-277-4521.

Copyright BAYCN - Bay City News
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