Saugus Police Department

Saugus Police Warn Public about IRS Phone and Email Scam

Saugus Police Department
Chief Domenic J. DiMella
27 Hamilton Street
Saugus, MA 01906

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Contact: John Guilfoil
Phone: 781-666-2012
Email: john@jgpr.net

Saugus Police Warn Public About Phony IRS Calls and Emails

Police, IRS, will NEVER Threaten to Arrest or Deport anyone for Unpaid Taxes

SAUGUS — Police Chief Domenic DiMella and the Internal Revenue Service today are warning consumers and residents about a sophisticated phone scam targeting taxpayers, especially recent immigrants.

Potential victims are told by an “agent” that they owe money to the IRS and that they must pay immediately through a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer. The “agent” tells the victim that if they do not cooperate, they will be arrested, deported, or their business or driver’s license would be suspended. The caller often intimidates the victim with hostility and insulting statements.

“This is a scam. It is nothing more than an attempt to victimize vulnerable residents, intimidating them into giving away their hard-earned money,” Chief DiMella said. “We need to get the message out: Police will never, ever threaten to arrest or deport anyone over unpaid taxes.”

In nearly all cases, once the victim gives away a pre-paid debit card number or makes a wire transfer, the money is gone and lost forever.

“This scam has hit taxpayers in nearly every state in the country. We want to educate taxpayers so they can help protect themselves. Rest assured, we do not and will not ask for credit card numbers over the phone, nor request a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer,” said IRS Acting Commissioner Danny Werfel. “If someone unexpectedly calls claiming to be from the IRS and threatens police arrest, deportation or license revocation if you don’t pay immediately, that is a sign that it really isn’t the IRS calling.”

Werfel also noted that the first IRS contact with taxpayers on a tax issue is likely to occur via mail.

Other characteristics of this scam include:

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:

Most importantly, the Saugus Police Department strongly urges residents to NEVER purchase pre-paid debit cards to give to a caller, and NEVER send a wire transfer to someone you do not know. Any money sent will be lost.

“Vigilance and skepticism are the best defense against these kinds of scams,” said Saugus Police Lieutenant Ronald Giorgetti. “Together, we can prevent the loss of money and the victimization of our residents.”

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Also posted here.