Authorities in LaPorte say a 63-year-old woman lost nearly $5,500 in an IRS phone scam. She told police she received several telephone calls from a number with a 916 area code but did not answer them.
On Feb. 18th she answered a call from the number and spoke to a man who claimed he was the Inspector General of California and a representative of the Internal Revenue Service. He told the woman a warrant had been issued for her arrest due to non-payment of taxes and said she could resolve the matter by wiring money from different locations. She hung up but got a second call from a woman claiming to be an Officer Gonzalez with the LaPorte Police Department. She threatened to arrest the woman if she did not send the money as instructed.
Police say the woman wired money as instructed. Employees at Walmart stopped her from completing a third transaction and notified the police of suspected scam activity.
LaPorte Police encourage anyone who gets such a telephone call to hang up. If you think you may owe taxes, call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. If a payment issue exists, employees can help you resolve it.
If you know you do not owe taxes or receive a threat from someone claiming to be an IRS employee, report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484.
You can file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Other” and then “Imposter Scams.” If the complaint involves someone impersonating the IRS, include the words “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.