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updated: 9/18/2012 5:34 PM

St. Charles grandmother tricked into sending $5,000 to "grandson"

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St. Charles police are warning residents to be aware of a telephone scam, after a woman was tricked into sending more than $5,000 to who she thought was her grandson.

Three St. Charles residents have been bilked by the "grandparent scam" this year, with the latest reporting the theft on Monday, according to police.

The woman told police she got a call from someone claiming to be her grandson, who lives out of state, and said he was involved in a car crash in Lima, Peru. The caller told the woman he was being held on a DUI charge in Lima and asked if his attorney could call her to make arrangements for his release, according to police.

The purported attorney called about 10 minutes later and told the woman to wire $2,823 to the grandson in Peru and the victim went to Wal-Mart and wired the MoneyGram.

The attorney called back shortly after receiving the money and said he needed another $2,450 to cover hospital bills for a victim in the crash and that if she sent the money, the woman would not seek criminal or civil charges.

The victim sent the additional funds, but when she didn't hear from her grandson she called his residence and realized he was at home and not out of the country, according to police.

All three of the "grandparent scam" reports in St. Charles involved the victim's "grandson" being arrested and charged with DUI in a foreign country, according to police. The other calls were from Canada and Mexico, and similar reports were taken in 2011.

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