Police warn of 'traveling scammers' - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Police warn of 'traveling scammers'

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They're called traveling scammers, and they bilk people out of money and in some cases identity.

"A popular belt for these seasonal movers would be Arizona, Nevada and California. So we see cyclic crime sprees. (You might) see an event in Phoenix that might pick up in Las Vegas and then go on to Long Beach," said Metro Lt. Gabriella Hatfield-Cook.

Typically the scammers are family members born into a nomadic lifestyle. They master a number of skills and can blend into any community to which they move.

"They have their own dialects, their own languages they speak, and it's usually families operating as a whole as a criminal element," Hatfield-Cook said.

The criminals will work to gain your trust, perhaps by performing simple tasks around your house. They may even try to scare you with a psychic reading, claiming your family or finances are cursed.

As soon as a victim is swindled, they'll pack up and leave town, making it hard for police to catch them.

Police say to avoid being taken in by them, only hire workers from reputable companies. If you're hiring a contractor, check with the Nevada State Contractors Board. Never give someone personal information out of fear.

Copyright 2013 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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