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Naples couple falls victim to gift card scam

They lost $2,000
Posted at 10:35 PM, Sep 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-16 22:35:07-04

When Jeanne Binder picked up the phone on Wednesday, she was sure it was her grandson, who said he was in an accident.

"And I said, it doesn't sound like you, and he said, well, I've got a broken nose."

And also needed 2,000 dollars to bond out of jail in California.  The payment had to be in gift cards to a man on the other end of the line pretending to be her grandson's lawyer.
 
"You must get Amazon, because they are in 500 dollar increments."
 
Binder bought them at a Naples CVS, the crook didn't need her to mail them.
 
"You just peel off and there's this number, it's instantaneous."
 
But on Thursday the scammer called back, saying he needed more money to get her grandson out of trouble.
 
"Right about then, with the $3,800, Larry (Binder's husband) smelled a rat."
 
Turns out her grandson was just fine and Binder's are trying to convince the fraudster to return the couple's money.
 
It's a costly lesson the couple doesn't want anyone else to learn the hard way.
 
"I just feel bad that another little old lady that's on her own, they don;'t care who they hurt."
 
The couple says they won't press charges if the suspect returns all of their money.
 
Similar scams are circulating around Collier County, often with the suspects posing as FPL employees or Sheriff's deputies.  
 
If you receive such a call, always ask for the employees identification and company information, and never send gift cards as a form of payment.