Abilene Police Department Warns Citizens and Businesses of Romanian National Scammers (Press Release)

by Public Information Officer, Wednesday, January 04, 2017, 10:42 (707 days ago)

ABILENE, TX – In recent months, the Abilene Police Department has gained intelligence regarding an influx of Romanian born Nationals (Roma-Gypsy) making their way through the United States using various illegal methods to scam money from businesses and citizens. They have made their way into Abilene and are suspected of using home repair scams and quick change scams, among many others, to steal money from individuals and businesses.

In November 2015, three Romanian Nationals were identified as suspects who placed a skimmer device in a bank ATM machine gaining hundreds of First Financial Bank customer’s financial information and stealing thousands from First Financial Bank.

They are also suspects in several home repair scams where they go door to door promising work to the homeowner, asking for money up-front and never following through with any work. They have promised to remove squirrels/rodents from the attic, or some type of home repair, to scam money from homeowners.

We want to advise our citizens that these individuals target the elderly. If you have a loved one, educate them on not accepting any work from anyone coming to their door soliciting work without the required soliciting permit from the City. They have also been known to specifically target Wal-Marts and its customers. They also use children to help garner trust from their targets in hopes of scamming more money from individuals.

The Abilene Police Department has worked collaboratively with other Law Enforcement Agencies to gain intelligence on these suspects. They have hit many other Texas cities and are suspected to live in larger cities, like the Metroplex, and branch out into smaller cities like Abilene where they perform their scams in traveling groups. This organized crime ring has worked in 20 states including Texas. We believe that by educating our citizens on how this group works, we can help stop them from targeting Abilene.

Rick Tomlin
Public Information Coordinator

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