The NYPD has reached out to TOT to alert members of the Jewish Community residing in the Midwood / Flatbush community regarding two disturbing crimes taking place.
According to the Commanding Officer of the NYPD’s 70 Precinct, Deputy Inspector James Palumbo, multiple elderly residents of the Jewish Community have recently been the victims of two crimes.
The first crime is the theft of jewelry allegedly perpetrated by cleaning crews working in the homes of the victims.
“Numerous incidents have recently taken place where thousands of dollars in jewelry was stolen from the residences, and the victims tell Detectives it appears to be carried out by cleaning help in their houses”, Palumbo says.
Making matters worse is that the victims are refusing to give Police the name of the cleaning agency.
“This is hindering our investigation and will prevent us from pursuing leads and hopefully make arrests in order to stop this troubling crime trend,” DI Palumbo added.
Police are alerting the community to please secure your valuables if you have cleaning help in your homes no matter how long they are employed by you.
Additionally, if you are a victim of this crime, please provide ALL information requested by Detectives to ensure that the perpetrators are arrested and this is brought to an end.
The second crime trend is where elderly Jewish victims have recently been the victims of a Grand Larceny scam.
The scam is not new, but has recently struck quite a few members of the community – including community members in their 90′s.
The victims are receiving phone calls from an “unknown number”, and telling them that a family member is in trouble and unless a check is written, their relative will go to jail.
Should you receive such a phone call, simply hang up and call 911. Do not under any circumstance cooperate with the caller, or give them ANY information whatsoever – even if they present factual information about your family, address or even your social security number.
A number of months agao, TOT reported about this scam, where the scam artists stated that a family member had been kidnapped.
FBI Agents say that hundreds of people in the New York City metropolitan region have been victimized by the scam recently.
The FBI says that the scammers don’t actually kidnap anyone, but use co-conspirators to convince their victims that a loved one is in danger.
The FBI says that the callers usually give victims specific instructions to wire ransom payments. Callers are told to stay on the phone until they send money to an account, usually in Puerto Rico.
Usually the con artists will ask for anywhere between $600 and $1,900. On some occasions, the suspects will call a second time to say the payment wasn’t received and then demand more money.
The FBI says that the scammers typically call from area codes outside the New York, and have been known to dial in from numbers with Puerto Rico area codes (such as 787, 939 and 853).
If the caller prevents a potential victim from locating the kidnapped person, ask for money via wire transfer or try to keep the person on the phone, they may be scammers.
The FBI says that New Yorkers who get calls from people asking for ransom they should try to slow the situation down and ask to speak to their loved one directly.
If they don’t let you, then ask them to describe the victim.
They say victims should also try to contact the “kidnapped” person on social media or try to call them with another phone.
The FBI says victims should also listen closely to the callers voices.