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Businesses warned to look out for foreign exchange scammers

Wednesday, December 18, 2013    

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THE police are warning business operators to be on the lookout for foreign exchange scammers operating in several business districts across the island.

According to the police, the scammers are visiting various business establishments on the pretence that they want to convert foreign currency. It is reported that they hand over the foreign currency without agreeing to an exchange rate and after receiving the Jamaican equivalent they then propose a higher rate.

The police further explained that after declining to accept the issued rate, the scammers then return the Jamaican currency and demand the return of the foreign currency. It is later discovered that the scammers have not returned all the money.

The police say the scammers are also tendering legitimate foreign currency for exchange and asking the business clerks to check if the money is counterfeit. However, after it has been verified as real the scammers are then said to request the return of the money, after disagreeing to the rate. They then make a call to a third party, who supposedly agrees to the proposed rate. At this point, the scammers insert counterfeit notes with the original notes that were already checked by the clerks.

In light of this new con, the police is urging business operators and employees to make all necessary checks when collecting or handing over cash when conducting business transaction.

"If you have checked off the cash before, check it again," the police said in a statement issued yesterday.

The police further urged persons to verify the currency handed over for exchange and to be aware of their surroundings.

"If you observe suspicious activities or persons, report it as soon as possible to the police."

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