Beware of $125,000 check scam

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PHOENIX – A woman received a big check in the mail and wants to know if she's being scammed so she contacted 3 On Your Side to look into the matter.  

It's a cashier's check and it looks real. It has a bank's logo, account numbers, everything.  All our viewer has to do is deposit it and then send the money somewhere but you know the deal. This is a total scam.

“I won a mink coat. I won a food processor and I also won a phone/fax system.”

Glo Williams says she's pretty lucky sometimes so when she recently received a letter stating she won a prize, she thought her luck was on a roll again.

After I was reading it, then I looked like I had won $125,000 and I went ‘Oh really, ok’!

She had reportedly won $125,000 just for being a loyal shopper at stores where Glo likes to shop.

“On the letter itself it is listing all the places that I do send money like Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Sears, Lowes, Home Depot, Staples, JC Penny's, Walgreens so then I thought this could be real.”

In order to get her $125,000, letter instructed Glo to do something. She says, “Then when I got down to the point where it says send money, cash the check then send money, wait a minute that doesn't work that way. This is fraud.”

This is how the scam works: Glo is supposed to deposit this very authentic-looking $3,800 check into her bank account and then wire most of it back to a guy named Adrien Davis in order to pay taxes on her winnings.  

But by the time she wires the money, it will take days for her bank to discover the check is fake and she'll be out all that cash wired to Davis.

3 On Your Side called Mr. Davis and played along with his little scheme.     

Gary Harper: “Oh because I shop there all the time my name was put into their system?”

Mr. Davis: “Yes.”

Gary Harper: “And then it was drawn and I won $125,000?”

Mr. Davis: “Yes.”

Gary Harper: “Wow! I’m pretty lucky!”

Mr. Davis: “Yes, you are.”

After listening to Mr. Davis try to convince me to deposit the check, I've had enough and let him know if anyone's been fooled, it's him.

Gary Harper: “Hey, I’d like to know how you sleep at night when you rip off people like you’re trying to rip me off?”

Mr. Davis: “If you think it’s a rip off, then forget about it. You have nothing to lose, ok?”

Gary Harper: “Why do you do this to people?”

Mr Davis: “I will cancel your claim, thank you.”

Gary Harper: “I want to know why you do this?”

Glo says she's glad she didn't get scammed although winning $125,000 was pretty enticing. "I didn't fall for it and I hope no one else does either."

It turns out Davis is in Canada fielding these phone calls but the money is most likely wired to countries like Nigeria where the U.S. has limited relationships and can't enforce our laws. The bottom line is never wire money.