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August 19, 2005

 

UDALL: JURY DUTY PHONE SCAM A

REMINDER TO PROTECT AGAINST IDENTITY THEFT

 

NEW MEXICO – U.S. Representative Tom Udall, D-N.M., a former federal prosecutor and New Mexico Attorney General, warned today that phony phone calls about jury duty are being used to intimidate citizens into revealing confidential information, potentially leading to identity theft and fraud. These calls are not from real court officials, Udall said.

 

 “Jury duty is an important, significant responsibility of every citizen. Unfortunately, con artists are constantly inventing new ways to persuade people into divulging their personal information,” Udall said. “This scam is a perfect example.  Federal courts do not require anyone to provide any sensitive information over the telephone.  Most contact between a federal court and a private citizen is conducted by mail.”

 

The telephone calls have been reported in various parts of the United States.  Citizens are told by the callers that they will be prosecuted for failing to comply with their request. 

 

Udall said it is a federal crime for anyone to falsely represent themselves as a federal court official.  Persons receiving such a call should notify the Clerk of Court’s office of the U.S. District Court in their area. The numbers for New Mexico are as follows:  Albuquerque: 505-348-2000; Las Cruces: 505-528-1400; Roswell: 505-625-2388; and Santa Fe: 505-988-6481.

 

Udall is a member of the U.S. House Law Enforcement Caucus.

 

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