Vancouver police have issued a warning to the public about a new scam targeting the elderly.
Fraudsters tell the senior that a loved one has been arrested.
Then they say they need thousands of dollars for legal fees.
“It’s not uncommon for scammers to target the elderly by contacting them by mail, telephone, or online,” Const. Tania Visintin said in a VPD news release. “What’s different and concerning is that fraudsters are now showing up at the victims’ doorsteps to collect cash. It’s brazen, and we’re concerned about people's safety.”
The first incident occurred on January 12 when a West Side couple in their 70s were victimized. They turned over $8,000 after being suckered into believing their nephew had been in a car accident.
The same day, a 75-year-old Kitsilano resident was told that her grandson was in a car accident and required $9,000 for bail. Again, the victim gave money to the person who arrived on the doorstep.
“We’re reaching out to other police agencies to determine how far reaching this scam is," Visintin said. "Until we know more, we urge everyone to be cautious about strangers who ask for money.”