91-Year-Old Lawrence Man Scammed Out of $1,700

Claiming to be the elderly victim’s grandson, a con man called the 91-year-old and said he had been caught with marijuana in Mexico and needed money in order to have his court hearing expedited.

An elderly Lawrence Township man was scammed out of $1,700 by a con man who pretended to be the victim’s grandson calling for help from a jail in Mexico.

Lawrence Township police spokesman Lt. Mark Ubry said the 91-year-old Burning Tree Lane resident received a phone call on Wednesday, Jan. 30, from the con man who, claiming to be the elderly victim’s grandson, said he had been caught with marijuana during a traffic stop in Mexico and needed money in order to have his court hearing expedited.

Following the con man’s instructions, the 91-year-old went to a Rite Aid Pharmacy in the area and wired $1,700 via Western Union to a location in Mexico.

Later that same day, the elderly man received a second call from the con man who, still posing at the victim’s grandson, claimed he had been sentenced to 45 days of community service but that another $1,500 could commute that sentence, Ubry said.

The 91-year-old attempted to go to his bank to withdraw the additional money, but the bank had already closed for the day. Concerned about his grandson, the victim called his daughter, who in turn contacted her son and learned that he was safe in Canada, Ubry said.

Realized that he had been scammed, the victim contacted police that night.

Officer Thomas Maple and Detective William Chester are investigating the crime. Anyone with information that might aid their investigation is asked to call police at (609) 896-1111.


Sanriobaby February 09, 2013 at 04:55 AM
This is a horrible scam and it's happening all over the country. It's important for people to talk to thier elderly family members and let them know about this scam. Families should remind them to NEVER send money via Western Union in response to these types of calls before touching base with another relative first. I doubt this gentleman will get his money back but hopefully his story will help others from getting scammed too.


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