If you get a phone call telling you there’s a warrant for your arrest, don’t believe it.

It turns out bad actors are researching potential victims on the internet and social media, and if they’re able to find a phone number they will call them and announce there’s a warrant for their arrest or other legal issues.

According to Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo Onofri, the scammers will then threaten people with arrest unless they pay a certain amount of what they may claim is bail money.

The Mercer County Cyber Crimes Unit is investigating recent phone scams where callers spoof non-emergency telephone numbers for different police departments.

Police won't do it

Onofri said everyone needs to understand law enforcement will never ask for payment of any type over the phone nor will they ask for personal identifying information that could be used for fraudulent purposes. Law enforcement and government agencies will also never ask you to pay by unusual methods, such as gift cards, wire transfers or cryptocurrency.

Onofri said if you get a call from what appears to be a police department within Mercer County or the Prosecutor’s Office, confirm who you are speaking with.

If you believe you received a scam telephone call, hang up and call the number back. If the call is legitimate, you'll be connected with a police dispatcher or receptionist who can verify the caller’s identity.

Report any scam calls to your local law enforcement agency.

Artur GettyImages
Artur GettyImages

David Matthau is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at david.matthau@townsquaremedia.com

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