Death Threat

October 25, 2016 OPINION/NEWS

By

Ricardo Swire

Caribbean media outlets recently quoted reports of a paid JCA$5,000,000 or US$38,415 assignation bounty on a key Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) Sergeant’s head. Evidence points to an illegal lottery scheme boss, whose name appears on an active US government extradition warrant. JCF intelligence noted a matching financial exchange, between the US based male lottery scammer and a major West Kingston Posse.

The beleaguered JCF Sergeant openly advocates revival of the island’s “Lottery Scam Task Force (LSTF),” where he functioned as Communications Officer from 2012 to 2014. Jamaica’s Major Organized Crime & Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) now includes the LSTF under its national security and safety umbrella. MOCA is the island’s equivalent to America’s Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).

The JCF Sergeant, in his role as Head of Police Area One Fraud Squad, provided official testimony in foreign cases that involved extradited lottery scammers. Call Centers located in Kingston and St. James once housed foreign airline companies, car insurers, computer manufacturers and credit-card companies. Jamaicans were hired, trained in customer service, communication techniques and the art of empathizing with their callers.

In 1990 rascal employees started using honed empathy skills for nefarious purposes. Transnational organized crime figures sold “Lead Lists” or “Sucker Lists” of potential victims to former call center employees. Lottery fraudsters use a “spoofing” technique that cuckolds telephone Caller Identification Devices (CIDs). The electronic manipulation makes received calls appear to originate from continental USA.

Some lottery scammers use the Google Earth web tool while conversing, to sound familiar with the duped individual’s neighborhood. Fraudulent lottery callers professionally tell elderly American victims that he/she has won millions of dollars in an overseas lottery. However the winner must first electronically wire hundreds of US dollars to the fraudsters for incurred taxes. Payment is followed by never ending requests for more money.

While duped individuals try to recover losses scammers even masquerade as local police officers to further take advantage of a victim’s confused emotional state. The law enforcement imposters declare the need for cash to aid investigations. Some lottery hustlers utilize gleaned bank account numbers to max out daily withdrawal allowances, without the account owner’s authorization. Captured credit cards are used for ballooned charges.

America’s Federal Trade Commission (FTC) indicated ninety-two percent of the victims never come forward. Jamaican lottery scam artists steal more than US$300 million per annum. In February 2015 a Jamaican male national, indicted by a 2012 US Federal court, became the first Jamaican to appear on illegal lottery scam charges. He was prosecuted with thirty-eight counts of fraud.

On Friday March 27th 2015 five “Ambition Gang” members were arrested in Llandilo, Westmoreland, Jamaica. Between 1:00am and 4:00pm representatives from the Counter-Terrorism & Organized Crime (C-TOC) unit, Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and US Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE), intercepted the BMW car transporting three of five suspects.

The BMW maneuvered around a Halcot Crescent home in St Andrew, when it was stopped by the law enforcement team. A search of both the BMW and house revealed two other suspects and lottery scam paraphernalia. One lead sheet, a book containing US residents’ personal information, ten mobile phones, one laptop computer, Jca$298,480, US$601, the BMW and a Toyota Corolla were seized.

In October 2015 six family members, including two teenagers, were murdered in Longwood, Hanover, Jamaica. Their home was set ablaze by attackers. The island’s National Security Minister of the day connected this massacre to another international lottery scam. Intelligence reports documented that violent clashes, between rival lottery scam syndicates, caused several murders in the island’s northern parishes.

The JCF Area One Fraud Squad Sergeant’s death threat is driven by international illegal lottery rackets similar to the charged female Nevada US resident, who “knowingly conducted financial transactions that involved the proceeds of unlawful activity. Knowing the property involved in the transaction represented proceeds of some form of unlawful activity. Knowing the transaction was designed to conceal and disguise nature, location, source, ownership and control of proceeds of the unlawful activity.”

In February 2014 the Nevada woman received US$7,500 cash. One co-conspirator instructed her to deposit the money in two separate bank accounts controlled by another accomplice. According to the DOJ on Tuesday April 22nd 2014 the woman collected US$32,500 currency, part of her preparation for a meeting with a potential client/victim. Only after the Nevada based fraudster was handcuffed by her “mark,” did she realize he was an undercover police officer. US Department of Justice (DOJ) documents stated the accused pleaded guilty to money laundering, linked to an international lottery scheme, operating between Florida and Jamaica.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ricardo Swire - Tuck Magazine

Ricardo Swire

Ricardo Swire is the Principal Consultant at R-L-H Security Consultants & Business Support Services and writes on a number of important issues.

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