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Templeton man loses approx. $700,000 to phone scam

Posted at 5:17 PM, Nov 05, 2019

A Templeton man reportedly lost about $700,000 recently from a phone scam.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office says it received a call from a local bank on Halloween regarding the possibility of an 88-year-old man being scammed.

"The bank reported the elderly victim had been withdrawing large sums of money in the form of wire transfers, cashier's checks and personal checks over the past few months and sending the money to various people," according to the press release.

The man told a deputy he had won $3.5 million and two Mercedes-Benz vehicles and needed to withdraw money from his bank to pay the taxes on the prizes, sheriff's officials say, adding that he was told to not tell anyone about the winnings.

Sheriff's officials believe the man was coached to say the money was repayment for a loan from a person he had known for many years in an effort to limit suspicion at the bank.

The sheriff's office says the man sent about $700,000 in recent months and was going to send more before the Secret Service stepped in and placed holds on some of the victim's accounts.

The investigation is ongoing.

The Sheriff's Office says this is the time of year when phone scams like this show up.

Anyone who receives a call similar to this should contact local law enforcement immediately.