Four charged in lottery scam

November 7, 2009 4:37:32 PM PST
Chicago police have broken up a lottery ticket scam that targeted elderly Hispanic people. John Garcia, 30, William Velasquez-Ortiz, 43, Janet Cruz, 39, and Carmen Perez- Santiago, 62, are charged with theft by deception.

Police say the four usually approached their victims on the street claiming to have a lottery ticket worth $1 million. According to authorities, they would say they couldn't cash the ticket because they were illegal immigrants and would offer to let the victims cash it and split the money. Police say the scam artists would flee after the victims put up money or jewelry as a good faith deposit.

Investigators said five victims were swindled out of $110,000.


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