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Uzdodoties par policijas darbiniekiem, izkrāpj 12 000 eiro

Repeated warning not to fall for scam calls

The State Police has opened criminal proceedings regarding another case when fraudsters, posing as bank and police employees, scammed a large amount of money – EUR 12,000 – from a father of two children. Police remind the public once again that scammers are using a lot of methods and to be vigilant, Latvian Television reported on April 3.

First Jānis Rimševičs' phone rang on the afternoon of March 11. The caller said he was from Google Security. Jānis' phone was allegedly hacked, with transactions taking place from the online bank. Jānis was asked to enter his account and check. Jānis refused, saying he wouldn't take the bait and would report it to the bank.

After 20 minutes, Jānis was called allegedly by the bank. Said the State Police were also involved. This was the moment the fraudsters broke Jānis' doubts. They acted in absolute coordination.

"Call from 'police': Hello, you have that problem, your phone is blocked, we'll unblock it. Called back, told me a pincode because mine wasn't taken. And then that work started with me," Jānis said, pointing out that the entire process lasted from 8 in the morning to 21:00 at night.

Callers told him that money should be taken out of the hacked account and put into a new account.

Jānis went to the bank and took out all his money, then gave it to the con man. The other took the bank card. He was assured it was part of a police operation to detain unscrupulous bank employees.

"I came, he told me the code and I gave the bag away," Jānis said.

The moment has been filmed as surveillance cameras are at the scene where it happened. The idea of searching for records came to Juris Močuļskis, a sworn lawyer whose help Jānis asked for.

"The lawyer has this right to gather evidence," Močuļskis said. "The car is identifiable, the persons are identifiable. Well, I think it's at least necessary to detain. Testimony, explanations, where they put the money and the cards."

Jānis wrote the application to the police on March 16. It's been half a month now.

"Within two weeks, none of the State Police employees has deemed it necessary to take video surveillance camera footage showing those individuals very well after criminal proceedings were launched. As a result, they have not been detained and are free to scam others!" the lawyer said.

The state police, meanwhile told LTV that they don't have to disclose all actions that they are taking.

"There are a lot of scams like this! What is very important – neither the State Police nor the bank's employees ever call and ask to withdraw the money and hand it over to someone. We urge people to be careful not to fall into the trap of fraudsters," said an anonymous police employee.

Jānis has lost more than just his money. In parallel, several consumer credits have also been taken using his Smart-ID.

Jānis is the family's sole provider. He is alone raising two children after his wife died.

"We treated mum for two years from cancer. She died. Then two more years. [..] We haven't been anywhere for five years... It was planned to go somewhere... Well, it will be enough for food. But with those loans..." Jānis is worried, because the fraudsters have taken another 10,000 euros in loans.

Banks warn customers almost weekly not to fall for calls from such fraudsters. Under no circumstances shall access codes or other personal information be disclosed, since in principle all transactions are carried out by fraudsters with access from the victim. Investigations into these cases often don't go smoothly due to a lack of evidence. 

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