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SUBMITTED A copy of a fake Wal-Mart money order.
residents are being contacted over the Internet to conduct a
business transaction of some sort and then are sent fraudulent
Wal-Mart money orders in the mail.
Over the past two weeks, the Oroville Police Department has
investigated these cases involving fraudulent money orders.
"The scam includes mailing the money orders to citizens,
typically three at a time for sums up to $850 each," said
OPD's Lt. Frank Belser. "The citizens are asked to cash the
money orders, keep some of the money for their service and
send the rest back to the scammer. The scammer actually
provides a return address."
The fake money orders that have been seized by OPD are
fraudulently duplicated as Wal Mart money orders. So far, OPD
has recovered $4,800 in such fraudulent money orders. Three of
the money orders were for $750 and three were for $850.
"We made one arrest of a female juvenile for passing a
fraudulent, forged document," Belser said. "So far, local
businesses and banks have been on top of things, but there is
a possibility there are more fake Wal-Mart money orders out
there. This type of scam is a typical cyber crime where the
public is easily accessible to these types of criminals. OPD
would like to remind the public not
to partake in such activities, and that it is a crime to
knowingly possess and/or pass fraudulent documents such as
Belser said people need to use some common sense to avoid
becoming a victim of fraud, "If someone contacts you and
offers to send you a money order or cashier's check in the
mail or via UPS or Federal Express, and wants you to cash it
and keep $100 and forward the rest on, there is something
Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey was reached for
comment, "This type of scam is like the one involving sending
fake money orders to someone trying to sell a puppy in the
newspaper classifieds," Ramsey said. "One way to protect
yourself from falling victim to this money order fraud is to
put the money order into your account and then wait at least
two weeks to see if the money order clears before sending any
money to anyone. Of course, if you start to get pressured to
forward the money right away, that is a red flag it is a scam.
Remember, if it's too good to be true, it probably is."
For more information about fake money order scams and other
types of frauds, see the District Attorney's website at:
To report a suspected fraud call the D.A. hotline at: