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Scam targeting families of inmates

Photo by Jason Braverman

Photo by Jason Braverman

LAWRENCEVILLE -- The Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department issued a warning Thursday for families of jail inmates: Be leery of callers who speak of bond monies.

The scam involves an alleged Sheriff's Department employee calling families of inmates and requesting they put potential bond money on a "PayPal Green Dot Money Pak card," a pre-paid debit card.

The caller goes on to say that once money is submitted to the cards, their loved ones will be released from jail.

Not so, said Sheriff's Department spokesman Capt. Sean Smith.

"The Sheriff's Department will not contact anyone by phone or email in an attempt to secure funds for bonding out inmates," Smith said in a release.

Smith said Sheriff's Department officials have not been alerted to any victims of this scam in Gwinnett. Two cases are under investigation at the Chatham County Sheriff's Department in Savannah, he said.

Officials urge anyone who feels they've been victimized by the scam, or who wants further information about it, to call Col. Don Pinkard, Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department, at 770-619-6500.