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Police warn of new scam 09-26-03

PHONE: 961-2311
SEPTEMBER 26, 2003


Police are warning Big Island residents about another scam Ñ this one in the form of a letter promising the recipient to “recover assets” it hints he is entitled to.

One Hilo resident received two letters, allegedly from different companies but typed in the same type font.

The first letter is from an alleged Nevada company that promises the recipient it has information that the recipient “may have a claim or a right to recover certain assets.” It says the assets come from sources such as “bank accounts, trusts, stocks, mutual funds, government agencies, estates and court accounts.”

By signing the letter, the recipient agrees “to engage our company to protect your rights so as to secure and deliver to you, your entitled assets.” In return, the recipient agrees to give the company a “contingency fee” of 30 percent of the value of any assets recovered for an indefinite period of time.

The letter goes on to say: “When we receive your authorization to proceed, we will gladly reveal all the information that we have.”

The second letter is from an “estate genealogist” allegedly based in California.

It hints that the “estate genealogist” has already found assets due to the recipient and offers to help the recipient get these “assets” for 40 percent of their value.

Again, it specifies the company will receive a percentage of “all assets that may be due to you” for an indefinite period of time.

By signing the letter and having it witnessed by an adult, the recipient apparently agrees to let the sender have a percentage of all assets he may receive in the future — whether the assets come from an inheritance, bank account or tax return.

Both letters also commit the recipient to letting the senders to choose the court venue in case he refuses to pay the “recovery fee” as well as paying for all attorney fees and court costs.

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