Sheriff: Don#039;t be fooled by latest scam

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 17, 2005

It sounds too good to be true: "Award claim, final notification," the letter read. "This is to inform you on the release of the El Gordo Sweepstake Lottery Program held on the 29th of November 2004. Your name attached to the ticket number … which consequently won the lottery in the third category."

The letter, received this week by a county resident, states the recipient is due $615,810. The "winner" can call an international telephone number and make arrangements to collect the prize.

But Lawrence County Sheriff Tim Sexton warns if it sounds too good to be true, it no doubt is exactly that.

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"It could be an attempt to get a person to send money for some 'fee' to claim their prize or 'taxes' must be paid on the prize," Sexton said in a prepared statement. "Also, it could be an attempt to cause the person to place a call to a phone number that will be billed at an extremely high rate and the person will receive nothing but an expensive phone call billed to them."

Sexton pointed out the person who received the letter had not even entered such a lottery drawing. He said those who receive such mail, faxes or e-mails should use common sense and disregard such unsolicited information.