Crime Watch

Crime Watch: Clever scammers warn against another scam

 

Special to The Miami Herald

This week many of you sent me the email, and I also received one. Needless to say, it’s a scam! It’s funny that the way they word it, telling you about the FBI email warning you against that scam, and yet this is a bigger scam.

Some readers actually fell for this and gave the information they requested. So if you get this email, delete it immediately. It’s not from Homeland Security or Treasury Department. Here’s the email:

SECRET SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

WASHINGTON, DC 20528, USA.

Good day,

This is the Department of Homeland Security we have vital mission: to secure the nation from the many threats we face as well as internet Fraud. This requires the dedication of more than 230,000 employees in jobs that range from aviation and border security to emergency response, from cyber security analyst to chemical facility inspector. Our duties are wide-ranging, but our goal is clear — keeping America safe.

We are happy to inform you that your funds valued at US$10,700,000.00 (Ten million Seven Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) have been approved by the Treasury Department of the United States.

Kindly get back to us for further directives.

Note: Do not reply to any e-mail that comes from the FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III. The FBI director does not e-mail people; He will rather send an agent to your door step in person. Do not fall a victim of scam again, a word is enough for the wise.

Thank you and have a good day.

Signed: Julia Pierson

Director, United States Secret Service

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Washington, DC 20528, USA

An interesting side note: While the email is totally phony, Pierson is very much the real head of the Secret Service. She also is an Orlando native and former Orlando police officer, and spent time in the Secret Service’s Miami office during the 1980s. She became the agency’s first female director earlier this year.

Jury duty

This past week I had a great learning experience, I was selected to sit in a jury in federal court — something that has never happened in 30 years. I never get selected because of the work I do, but I am glad they picked me because I learned a lot.

I was impressed by the way U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke ran her court. I was impressed by the way the prosecutors and defense lawyer presented their cases. I was astounded by the way they questioned all the possible jurors, the questions that were asked and some of the answers that some gave just to get out of being selected.

At one point we had a little laugh because one potential juror stated to Judge Cooke that “he believed all lawyers were scum” and Judge Cooke asked, “Are you stating that everyone in this room” is scum? The guy didn’t know what to say, and just said, “Oh, I heard that somewhere.” It was just too funny.

I can tell you that it was a challenging case but we did take one criminal off the street at the end, and I actually learned how criminals can file your income tax return and steal your money, a topic for another time.

For those that dread going to jury duty, you shouldn’t. It’s a learning experience and a true service to our community, especially when we can take those off the street that are hurting us through crime.

Have a great Labor Day, and be safe.

Carmen Caldwell is executive director of Citizens’ Crime Watch of Miami-Dade. Send feedback and news for this column to carmen@citizenscrimewatch.org, or call her at 305-470-1670.

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