A lottery scam artist was so confident in his ability to evade capture he told Pennsylvania police, "I have the best firewall in the world. I cannot be caught."
The police officer spoke to the bold rogue while investigating a new lottery scam designed to mislead people into believing they have won the Pennsylvania Lottery Second Chance draw. Victims who fall for the scam are then told they must pay an advance fee before their winnings can be released.
The Pennsylvania Lottery does have a legitimate Second Chance draw, but it is conducted entirely online. The scammers initially contact their victims by phone, but they are very convincing and even have an 800 number that plays a recording of the phone message used by the real lottery switchboard.
"They stole our switchboard recording for their phones," Pennsylvania Lottery representative Gary Miller said.
An officer from the Taylor Police Department was sent to investigate when a local resident called in and alerted them of the scam.
The resident said she had received a call from someone called Jim Phillips, who told her she had won $5 million in the Second Chance Drawing and must ring 1-800-419-5970 in order to claim the prize.
The scammer's intended victim rarely played the lottery so she was immediately suspicious and informed the police.
A police officer rang the number and spoke to Phillips, who assured the officer there was no need for concern.
Subsequent checks revealed the scammer's credentials were as bogus as the promised prize, but when the police challenged the fraudster his only response was to taunt them with his 'catch me if you can!'
Anyone who believes they have been contacted by lottery scammers should contact their local police department immediately.