Major David Harper of the Madison County Sheriff’s Office reports that on Friday, November 30, 2018 Deputy Scott Newman was dispatched to a residence in Lee in reference to a scam. Upon arrival Deputy Newman learned that the complainant was in-fact the victim of a money scam. The victim reported that on November 26th, she was contacted via a phone (786-971-4199) from a male subject identifying himself as David Freeman and convinced the victim that she had won a large sum of money however to claim the winnings the victim would be required to send payment for fees associated with the winnings. The caller instructed the victim to conceal $1,500.00 cash within the pages of a magazine, seal the magazine with tape and use Fed Ex to mail the magazine to John Boyce at an address in Lauderhill, Florida. The victim did as instructed but was soon contacted by Freeman again instructing her to send an additional $6,000.00 cash utilizing the same method. The victim followed the instructions and mailed the money before the victim’s family encouraged her to contact Law Enforcement.
MCSO investigators was able to successfully identify John Boyce of Lauderhill, Florida as the individual who placed the phone calls and identified himself as David Freeman. Investigators discovered that Boyce is currently on Florida Department of Corrections Community Control in Broward County. Probable Cause was established and arrest warrants were obtained on Monday, December 10th in Madison County for Communications Fraud and Grand Theft. John Boyce was arrested the same day by the Lauderhill Police Department.
“I caution everyone to be aware of scams. There are numerous types such as Publishers Clearing House, IRS, fake utility companies, contests and even scammers posing as Law Enforcement Officers. Scammers often use cloned or spoofed phone numbers and are usually very convincing. The phone number used in this case had the same prefix as phone numbers assigned to the Lee area although the area code was different. They may even have some type of personal knowledge about their victims. Often the scammers are very intimidating and aggressive. Most scammers target the elderly population; however, they will victimize anyone who will communicate with them. I remind everyone to never send cash for payment or use any type of prepaid card like Apple iTunes, Google Play, Green Dot or other gift cards. Be very protective of your personal information to include date of birth, social security number and credit cards. It is also good to closely monitor your credit report. Always remember that you cannot win a contest that you didn’t enter. It is encouraged to contact your local Law Enforcement Agency and report these type of phone calls and forms of mailed communication to verify authenticity.” Major David Harper.
Lauderhill, FL 33313
Photo obtained from the Florida Department of Corrections Offender Network