WILMETTE, IL — Beware of the ‘long-lost family member’. And especially guard against his ‘lawyer’.
That was the $16,000 lesson for a resident of the 3100 block of Central Avenue in Wilmette last week. Between March 27 and March 30, a man got a phone call from someone who claimed to be his nephew.
This counterfeit nephew spun an elaborate tale of how he had been in an accident in California, and the fake family member told the victim he needed money to pay his resulting bills, said the police.
Once the victim agreed, the phony nephew passed the phone to an alleged attorney.
The person who claimed to be a lawyer representing the victim’s nephew explained a scheme in which the victim would somehow pay legal fees in California by purchasing a series of Home Depot gift cards and mailing them to an address in Chicago..
$16,000 in Home Depot gift cards were mailed to the Chicago address over the course of the three-day period.