How to avoid bail bond phone scams. Updated: International Fraud Awareness Week is November 13-17, 2017. Join the global effort to minimize the impact of fraud by promoting anti-fraud awareness and education.
Bail Bond Phone Scams: Here is how they are conning unsuspecting families and what you can do about it.
Scammers claiming to be working for the bail agent will contact families who have just posted bond. If you have recently posted a bond or are planning to do so, know that there are unscrupulous individuals preying on those who post bonds. Here is how they are conning unsuspecting families. They will tell them that there is another charge or fine that must be paid and if they electronically wire cash to their account, the defendant will then be released. Unfortunately, there is no charge or fine. The cash is immediately picked up and the number is to a burner phone.
Sometimes a follow up con is often used: Once you have paid for the “additional fine” or “new bond”, they now offer to have the charges “go away” for a fee.
Another scam that you should be wary of.
Sometimes a defendant has a bond amount that is beyond what the family can afford. If someone calls and tells you that they are willing to take only a small percentage of the normal fee and without collateral, do not do it.
They will offer to meet not at an office, but at a restaurant or some other local place. When you give them the cash they will tell you to go to the jail and wait for the defendant’s release. Upon arrival, you find that no bond has been posted and the bogus bond agent isn’t answering his burner phone.
What you can do.
There are occasions when a warrant is picked up by the jail prior to releasing a defendant, but if you are not being contacted by the same bail agent or agency you worked with for the original charge, don’t be deceived. Hang on to your money and call the Sheriff’s fraud unit or local law enforcement immediately.
One of the worst bail bond phone scams out there:
Please know that NO ONE CAN GET CHARGES DROPPED FOR A FEE.
If you do find someone in the system that is offering to do so notify your local F.B.I office immediately.
If you are unsure that the fees being asked for are appropriate or if you are dealing with a legitimate agent, contact us.