A scam having to do with bail bonds is making its way around the Gulf Coast. These people scare you into giving them money over the phone.
We spoke with a man works for a local bail bonds company. He was contacted recently by someone who had been called by a scammer.
“They were told to go buy a greendot card and they didn’t understand why and I said, ‘sir, that sounds like a scam’,” he says.
He says the caller tells these people he’s a bondsman and that their loved one is in jail. He then tells them he can take care of the bail over the phone if the person gives them the number on a greendot card or their account number. The con is spreading quickly.
“I’ve had seven calls since then.”
The scammer says his name is Travis, and he calls from a 515 number. He tells people he’s with A to Z Bonds, which closed down several years ago. And this guy can be very convincing.
“He knows personal information about the people, the person they’re claiming to be in jail, and the person that he’s calling. He knows relative’s names and numbers.”
And while bondsmen will call you if a relative is put in jail, he has this warning.
“If they pressure you for a credit card or anything of that nature over the phone, make sure it’s a real bonding company. Make sure you call and talk to an agent at the bonding company, and above all else, make sure the person is in jail.”
He already knows of at least two people who have each lost around $500 in this scam.
This is similar to the grandparent’s scam where thieves make you think your grandson or granddaughter is in jail and asks for immediate funds. And just as with that scam, call the person they claim is in jail, or call another relative who might know for sure.