9Wants to Know investigates aggressive lottery scams

9:31 PM, Mar 23, 2013   |    comments
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DENVER - There's a good chance you've received those emails that claim you've hit a massive jackpot. 

But getting your "winnings" requires you to pay a "fee" or a foreign "tax" to receive your cash or check.

Lottery scams are nothing new, but investigators with the U.S. Postal Service say they're trying to track down the con artists who take the scam to another level.

It's common for scam artists to send victims a check with instructions to deposit it into a bank account and then send back a small percentage of the winnings for "tax." The check will often be fake and the victim will be on the hook for the amount deposited.

"If there is any kind of push back from the victims, they are incredibly aggressive," U.S. Postal Inspector Antonio Gomez said.

In Jamaica, the lottery scam artists have been known to use online satellite maps, such as Google Street View, to see a victim's home so they can make specific threats.

The scammers can use the description of a victim's home over the phone to make them believe "someone will deal with you personally if you don't pay up."

"We currently are working with the Department of Justice and extraditing individuals from Jamaica to US to face federal charges," Gomez said.

Click here if you believe you've been the target of a foreign lottery scam.

Have a comment or tip for investigative reporter Jeremy Jojola? Call him at 303-871-1425 or e-mail him

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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