Sunday, July 21, 2024

RCMP Warn Motorists of Roadside Jewelry Scam in Southern Manitoba

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are alerting the public about a resurging jewelry scam in southern Manitoba. Community Constable Dennis Redikop reports that scammers are parking on the roadside, flagging down motorists, and pretending to sell jewelry to raise cash for supposed car troubles. Redikop stresses that this is a scam.

“If somebody is flagging you down on the side of the road, trying to sell you jewelry, that should be one flag,” warns Redikop. “Because you don’t know if it’s real or not, there’s no way to test it roadside.”

A recent victim recounted being flagged down on Provincial Road (PR) 311, about half a mile east of Highway 12. The scammer, claiming to be a stranded traveler from Dubai, was trying to sell items such as a Rolex watch for $1,000, a gold chain for $500, and a gold ring for $200. The distressed man, accompanied by his wife, convinced the Good Samaritan to purchase a ring for $200.

This scam is not new to southern Manitoba. In February, the RCMP warned about similar incidents in the Pembina Valley, involving a vehicle with an Ontario license plate. Recently, reports included an Audi SUV with a Quebec license plate, indicating that the scammers are likely not local and have been targeting various regions.

In some cases, the fraudsters even ask for gas money. The Good Samaritan from PR 311 admitted that the experience might make him more hesitant to help strangers in the future. “Probably, but I’ll likely still help people, I didn’t give away my life savings or anything,” he said, expressing hope that others won’t fall for the scam.

Redikop advises the public to be cautious and not to feel pressured into buying anything. “We suggest people to be mindful if they want to help out, assist someone roadside, that there could be potential dangers,” he adds. “We want to keep everybody safe from scams that are going around.”

Anyone who has fallen victim to this scam or has been targeted is urged to contact the RCMP, call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477.

The RCMP stresses the importance of being safe and vigilant when pulling over to assist someone on the roadside.

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