The victim of the scam said he was forced to by MoneyPak gift cards. (WFSB photo)
WOLCOTT, CT (WFSB) -
Eyewitness News spoke exclusively to the most recent Connecticut victim of a scam where police are called to victims' homes if they don't pay up.
Mir Chowdhury told police that he received a phone call on his cell phone in which the caller stated they were from the Internal Revenue Service.
The caller explained to the victim that there was a warrant out on him and if he wanted to stay out of prison, he needed to pay.
The caller claimed that because he had defaulted on his taxes "we are not accepting your credit cards, debit cards, money or bank checks," said Chowdhury.
"Not even five minutes in, they say there is something added on," Chowdhury said. "They are showing you are now paying for $12,000."
Chowdhury told police the caller forced him to go to local stores and purchase multiple $4,500 worth of Green Dot MoneyPak gift cards. He said he then read the numbers of the gift cards to the caller.
"The victim then realized that he had just been scammed and reported the incident to the police," Wolcott Police posted on its Facebook page.
Wolcott Police Chief Edward Stephens said "it is very difficult when we try to track the numbers down and see where the phone came from and if it's another country. It is difficult to track these people down."
Chowdhury hopes that by getting the word out about what happened to him that others will learn and not have the same thing happen to them.
Eyewitness News reported the same scam targeted a Watertown resident on Monday.
Police in Watertown said the caller first claimed the taxpayer owed an exorbitant amount of money and that they would be arrested unless a settlement was reached.
When the Watertown resident did not comply, the caller posed as the victim and said armed intruders were in the home. The suspect even manipulated the caller ID to make it show as the scam victim's number.
Police warned Connecticut residents to never give money or any other items over the phone.
"If you get any calls such as this one, hang up and call the police," Wolcott police said.
Police said the IRS was aware of the scam.
The IRS said that if people know they owe taxes or think they might owe taxes, they can always call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. Employees at that line can help with a payment issue, if there is an issue.
If people know they do not owe taxes, they can call and report any incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484.
Scam victims or anyone contacted by scam artists should also contact the Federal Trade Commission and use its FTC Complaint Assistant option at FTC.gov. Users should add "IRS Telephone Scam" to the comments of the complaint.
More information on this scam and others can be found here.
Copyright 2014 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Wednesday, July 23 2014 7:06 AM EDT2014-07-23 11:06:51 GMT
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