SAN GABRIEL (CBS) — It’s a telephone scam that may not sound all that convincing, but police on Wednesday warned San Gabriel residents they could be ripped off if they regularly use mail-order prescription drugs.
Police said crooks posing as agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration tell the mark that a shipment of illegal prescription drugs being sent to his or her home has been intercepted in the Dominican Republic.
The addressee is then threatened with arrest unless a fine is paid, according to officials.
The call shows up on caller I.D. as being a U.S. number, but they typically originate in the Dominican Republic. The target is then told to wire money to an account, and given a number to call, police said.
At least one woman in San Gabriel has reported getting such a call, police said.
The crooks appear to be preying on mostly older people who regularly mail-order prescription drugs.
Dialing the call-back number can also be costly, police said, adding that it is set up to bill the caller up to $100 per minute.
Anyone targeted by someone with a similar story is urged to report it via the Federal Trade Commission website.
(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)