The San Diego County Superior Court is warning the public about a reoccurring scam wherein phony court officials call people and claim they owe hundreds of dollars for situations like failing to appear for jury duty.
The warning, which was made Wednesday, came after court officials received several complaints related to the scam.
In one case, officials say a scam artist posed as a court officer when calling a man and told him that he had failed to appear for jury duty and owed the court $300 for missing the date and another $485 for contempt of court.
The phony officer claimed that if the man failed to pay he would be arrested.
Taking the scheme a step further, the scam artist then gave the man another date to appear for jury duty, but required that he first pay his fake fine. The man was told the court does not take cash and he must purchase a money order at a convenience store and then meet the phony court officer at the courthouse.
In another scam, someone claimed to be a court clerk calling a would-be victim to inform them that they had an outstanding warrant fine that had to be paid in cash.
Officials said neither of the victims in these cases fell for the scam, but officials wanted to warn the public to be on alert.
“People need to know that the court will not call someone on the phone to remedy a court issue or fine,” said Michael Roddy, Executive Officer of the San Diego Superior Court.
Roddy added that the court will send you a written notice and won't call you asking for money. Furthermore, the court does accept checks and credit cards.
Officials advised anyone who got a call similar to the scam to hang up and contact law enforcement if the caller persisted.