The LaPorte City Police Department is investigating a scam.
A 59-year-old LaPorte man told police that he received a phone call from “Walter Lopez” and said he was calling on behalf of Publishers Clearinghouse. “Lopez” told the victim that he was the winner of a $250,000 cash prize and a new vehicle. In order to claim the prize, the victim was asked to obtain a PayPal card in the amount of $350 and call “Lopez” back with the card number. “Lopez” claimed this was a service fee.
The victim purchased the card and gave “Lopez” the number. The victim was then asked to obtain another card worth $300 to cover taxes on the money he won and then another card for $200 to cover attorney fees. The victim complied and provided “Lopez” with the card numbers.
The next day, the victim called Publisher’s Clearinghouse and spoke to them about the conversations with “Lopez” and the representative told the victim that they did not contact him and they never ask prize winners to send money to claim winnings.
The victim attempted to contact “Lopez” again but could not reach anyone. It was then he called the LaPorte City Police Department to report the scam.
Officers remind you to never give out personal information over the phone or agree to send money in order to claim a prize.