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Friday, January 22, 2010

Attorneys victim of internet check fraud Most had if figured out long ago

Lawyers swindeled in internet scheme

I guess attorneys figure no one is going to mess with them.  When they see the same riff raff trying to scam them the way the scum bags scammed their clients you would think these guys would catch on.  But then, attorneys are not famous for being bright, just educated!

The FBI warns attorneys, they too, can suffer the consequences of internet crooks.  Here is how one scam works:  The scam man sends an email to the attorney.  He wants legal representation.  He needs to collect payments another person owes him in the US.  He makes a prposal:  The lawfirm will get a check for their retainer.  Since the client appears to be swimming in money he can send an extra amount.  He tells the attorney, once all of the funds due are paid, go ahead and pull the rest of the funds out of the account and send them to China, for example.

It takes a little time for the light bulb to come on for the attorney.  When he reconciles his attorney trust account he will find himself short.  Way short.  He refunded money to a bogus buyer in china based upon a counterfeit check!  The attorney is out the money and will have to re-supply the funds to the bank.

When the fish are not biting then change the bait.  There is a new twist which seems as effective as the old one was.  A fraudulent client calls up asking for representation as an "ex wife" on assignment in an Asian country.  She is trying to collect divorce settlement funds from her ex-husband who lives in the U.S. 

The law firm agrees to represent the defenseless woman.  They agree to help their client and send an email to Mr. X demanding payment of divorce settlement money.  The husband, obviously in 'fear' of the law firm bucks up right away and sends a check via delivery service.  The ex-wife says 'great job!' please wire the funds, less attorney's fees, to an over seas bank account, which the attorney does.  The attorney gets that sick feeling in his stomach when the check bounces and his client has disappeared. 

You don't have to be desperate or uneducated to get caught up in the series of scams on the net these days.  Fortunately, the FBI is very aggressive in prosecuting this kind of trash.  It is eash of our responsibility to report internet criminals when we see them.  Otherwise, it won't be our internet for long!

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