Couple Scammed out of Hundreds of Dollars - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Couple Scammed out of Hundreds of Dollars

GREAT FALLS - One local couple is hoping you don't fall for the same scam they did.  The couple, who asked to remain anonymous and will be referred to as Jane & John Doe, was sent a Facebook message from their uncle.  

It read in part, "I saw your name on a list of winners for money.  It's legit, check it out."

Shortly after they were contacted by a 'William Roy' via Facebook messenger.  In a message he confirmed what their uncle had told them, saying they were eligible for grant money. All they had to do was send $300 and in return, $80,000 would be sent to them and they wouldn't even have to pay it back.

The Does said the messages raised some red flags, but since it came from a family member they went with it anyway.  They made multiple calls to their uncle but he never picked up, even though he was responding to Facebook messages.

Roy, whose Facebook page says he lives in Duluth, Minnesota, told the Does to send a check to an address in North Carolina.

The Does sent in the money via Western Union and was assured by Roy that the $80,000 would be on their doorstep within days.

When the money didn't show, the Does realized they'd been had by a scammer.  Begging for their money back, Roy kept reassuring them the $80,000 would come any day now. 

After days of trying to reach their uncle on the phone, he finally answered while the Does were here at KFBB telling us their story.

Their uncle reassured his family he had not sent them any Facebook messages and in fact deactivated his account just a few days prior.

Dan Buchta, with the Better Business Bureau, says this a very common scheme. Facebook accounts can be impersonated or hacked in an effort to gain access to other people, like family members.  While the social media site does check and often flag duplicate accounts, in this case that doesn't appear to have happened.

It's unclear if the Does will get their money back at this time.  

As a good rule of thumb, Buchta said, "If it looks too good to be true, and it sounds too good to be true, it probably is just that, too good to be true."

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