Dublin Police have sounded the tax fraud warning: residents are being conned.
"Basically, its identity theft. This is a big time of year. It's tax season. It’s a time they can use the info they've gathered on a person to file a false return,” warns Lt. Steve Farmer of the Dublin Police Department.
One of the victims in this tax-time scam is out about $20,000. Over the phone, he was told if he didn't send money to the government immediately, he'd be arrested or deported.
Now he's confirmed it was all a con. But it's too late. His money is long gone.
Police say the culprits are targeting certain populations.
"A lot of this has to do with miscommunication. Some of our Asian population has been targeted because, perhaps, being immigrants, they're not as familiar with our tax process,” says Lt. Farmer.
The threatening emails extort thousands of dollars on threats of deportation and arrest. The only way the scammer says you can satisfy the government is to wire money immediately with a credit card.
Farmer says he has seen the scam before, but this year, it has become more prevalent.
"It’s crunch time. We're right at tax day; a day away. We're going to get more of these calls.”
To make things worse, police say the suspects seem to be calling and emailing from overseas, making them that much harder to track down.
Police warn consumers not to verify sensitive tax information over the phone to someone calling.