The Booneville Police Department has received two complaints by residents about a scam involving someone purporting to be a Drug Enforcement Agency representative contacting them.
In one case the woman was in Yell County, the other is a Booneville woman. In both the number represented on caller-id and or left in a voice mail is from the 202 area code, which is in Washington, D.C.
However, as with virtually all scams the idea is to get your money.
Both women were told their names came up in an investigation about online pharmaceutical purchases without a prescription. Both were also told if they did not resolve the matter a federal warrant would be issued for their arrest.
The Yell County resident returned the call and got an answering machine and let it go. The Booneville woman was told the matter could be resolved with payment of over $1,800 through a Santa Domingo bank.
That raised a red flag, so the local woman was not victimized.
Booneville Police Chief Al Brown told the women it was a scam for two reasons.
"If the federal government has a problem with you they’re not going to call you on the phone, they’re going to come see you in person," said Brown. "Second, if anybody tells you you need to send money to a foreign country, it’s a scam. It’s that simple."
Brown also said if anyone gets a telephone call suspicious, they can type the phone number into a Google search, in this case 202-241-0566, and from a phone notes site easily find forums where people have entered information about various scam attempts attributable to the number.
Another such claim from 202-241-0566 involved a claim of being a representative of the Department of Justice, again about a pending indictment.
Another option for verifying information is the FBI’s website.