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My mum has been caught out by overseas fraud. What can I do?

(41 Posts)
mckenzie Wed 12-Mar-14 21:31:47

It's actually my mums husband (not my father) but he has now involved my mum too. I do t know exactly how much money that have sent but I know it's in the thousands.
The scam is that he is due some money from some old investment but it needs so especial for and paperwork to release the funds hence the need for money from him upfront.
I can't believe he has fallen for it and that my mum has let herself be talked into going along with it but it's too late I think to worry about that now. Perhaps I can persuade her to go to the bank and stop the latest transfer I don't know but I thinking that we should perhaps be going to the police. Am I right? Should the police be informed?

MissingTheMountain Wed 12-Mar-14 21:36:20

Yes, she needs to report it.

Mainly because she doesn't know what she's funded, so she could be linked to anything. It's not unheard of for people to get visited by the police after this kind of thing, because the money has been implicated into something dodgy.

She should also stop the transfer, if she can, but presuming it's to another bank account directly, this may not be possible.

Hiphopopotamus Wed 12-Mar-14 21:37:17

Holy crap on a cracker. I think people often assume that no one would fall for these scams, but some do,vehicular is why the scammers keep trying. I would inform the police. They may not be able to do a whole lot, but at least the activity will be noted and recorded. Absolutely stop any transfers that you can too. Really sorry this has happened to your family.

Hiphopopotamus Wed 12-Mar-14 21:38:05

Which is, not vehicular! Bloody autocorrect.

mckenzie Wed 12-Mar-14 22:30:06

I spoke to the police and they want all the information but they dont envisage being able to help get any money back which is what I thighs. They just want the formation to keep on their files to help build bigger and better pictures of these fraudsters.
I dreading the conversation I'm going to have to have with my dear mum tomorrow.

mckenzie Thu 13-Mar-14 19:18:26

I've just found our that the total sum they have sent so far, in various different amounts, is over £114,000. I feel sick to the bottom of my stomach! They won't be left alone now will they? These people will hound them until they have bled them dry! How can my own mum have been so so stupid?
My mum has promised me she won't send another penny but I'm worried her husband will persuade her otherwise.
Shall I go and see her husband? Try and persuade him it's all crap?

itiswhatitiswhatitis Thu 13-Mar-14 19:21:35

shock sorry no advice I think talking to your mums husband is a good idea or suggest police talk to him.

tribpot Thu 13-Mar-14 19:24:59

I think you need to ask the police to go and speak to them. If they have been this taken in by these people they won't believe you.

Sid77 Thu 13-Mar-14 19:48:51

Yes, this is fraud and yes, they should report it. I used to work in fraud (goodie not baddie) and have seen sensible people send hundreds of thousands of pounds to these scammers. You would be amazed at the type of people who are taken in - I even saw a high court judge getting conned. Report it to the police and insist that someone speak to your mum and her DH. Stress that they are elderly and vulnerable. They are unlikely to see any money back I'm afraid so concentrate on stopping them from sending more. They will go on a list and are likely to be contacted by more fraudsters for more money. If you can, try to vet their post/emails. If anything sounds too good to be true, it probably is - shares, land parcels, gold mines, inheritance, lottery wins, all of these and more. Nary to google 419 fraud ar advance fee fraud for some info to show them. Look at Metpolice419 to start with. Feel free to ask more questions if you need to. HTH

RandomMess Thu 13-Mar-14 19:51:39

sad that is just so so awful sad

mckenzie Thu 13-Mar-14 19:56:03

Thank you Sid. That website is very useful. I'm going to go over first thing tomorrow morning (DH not home so can't go now) and confront them and ask to see all the communication and then go to the police with the details. If the police tell them it's a scam they might listen. I'm So worried for the future. They are intelligent, youngish old people (if you get my drift) and I'm really struggling to accept that they have fallen for this.
Sending money to the Philippines for fecks sake! It's heart breaking.

Sid77 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:05:31

It is a horrible situation, I really feel for you. Do you know the details? Chances are that these fraudsters have tried similar to hundreds of other people, you may be able to identify the particular fraud online and use it to convince your mum that it IS a fraud. There are loads of forums dedicated to listing these scams and exposing the fraudsters. Do persist with the police, ask to be put through to the fraud/financial crime unit. The police are sometimes reluctant to take these cases on as it will be an 'unsolved crime' but they can help to prevent more loss. It sounds as though they are willing to log it, which is good and a start and getting them to speak to your folks would be great - they will probably take a policeman more seriously than just you

mckenzie Thu 13-Mar-14 20:11:43

I don't know any details yet but when get them tomorrow I'll do a search on the internet and see what I can find to show them.
I'm concerned about what other information about themselves they've handed over. Obviously bank details but maybe also date of birth, phone numbers, passport number maybe. The list could go on couldn't it?
Personally I think they'll have to change their phone numbers and their e mail addresses for the future and be very careful who they give them out to.

PigletJohn Thu 13-Mar-14 20:40:20

they should change their phone no and go ex directory. The scammers will not easily give up.

mckenzie Thu 13-Mar-14 21:29:28

I agree but first, I've got to get them to accept its a scam.

What do you mean when you say you need them to accept it's a scam?

mckenzie Thu 13-Mar-14 21:38:25

My mum's husband still believes that the huge sum of money they are due will be in their bank account next week!
That's why he persuaded my mum to send the extra £4000 that was needed yesterday because some form has been lost that was needed for the final transfer and 'they' needed the funds to organise this extra form! Total and utter bollocks.

Oh dear. I see what you mean now. That is very worrying.

Jesuisunepapillon Thu 13-Mar-14 21:56:00

I'm so sorry OP, how horrendous for you. I hope you can get through to them that this is a scam.

mckenzie Thu 13-Mar-14 22:07:02

Thanks for the supportive messages everybody. I really appreciate it.

Sid77 Thu 13-Mar-14 23:32:55

Good idea to change phone number and email address. Another great website with a really good explanation of how these frauds work, which should ring bells with your mums DH 419eater

mckenzie Fri 14-Mar-14 15:57:55

So, a very very nice and helpful man at JP Morgan fraud dept took at look at e mails and contracts that we scanned and sent to him this morning and he has agreed with me that it's a scam. My mum believes me now. And I think her husband does although I wouldn't put money on it.
We contacted the police fraud action team and they took all the details And will I hope be in touch to offer them some support and persuade them to change phone numbers etc as I couldn't get that far.
It seems though that this isn't the only 'deal' he has going on! I think we've just unearthed a can of worms as they say.

RandomMess Fri 14-Mar-14 18:32:44

sad I hope your parents okay after all of this, it's just awful.

mckenzie Tue 18-Mar-14 12:13:39

And so it goes on. Mums husband, let's call him P, is still believing the scam. They have done such a good job of telling their lies and he is now doing a good jib of getting mum to believe it all.
The scam is so obvious when you loom at it with an open mind; the e mail addresses are so blatantly obviously fake, the letterheads have typing errors and aren't always the same, the type face changes when something has probably been cut and pasted.
It's scary, so scary, that they can't see what is staring them In the face. Presumably because they re in so deep that can't let themselves junk that it might be a scam.
They don't have any money left to give them but what if the borrow more, get a bank loan, god forbid use the deeds of the home (owned by my mum).
I'm so scared for them but feel my hands are tied now. I lost it a little yesterday when P started talking about some other shares that these people wanted to buy. I pretty much grabbed his shoulders and shook him, telling him it's a scam and asking why he can't see it. Not ideal I know but I really don't know what else to do.
Sorry for going on. It does help to write it down for some reason.

Fontofnowt Tue 18-Mar-14 12:17:28

No advice.
So sorry your Mum is going through this and you too it's sick making.

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