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A spectator received a warning after a scammer pretended to be a Florida nonprofit to offer him a job, a fake check, a demand to buy equipment to work from home


CHICAGO (CBS) “What’s worse than refusing?” How about being hired by scammers?

The viewer turned to Tim McNichalas of CBS 2 to warn other hunters at work not to fall victim to the scheme made by the viewer.

The job seeker in this story has asked to remain anonymous because he is still looking for opportunities after his last prospect failed.

So what went wrong?

He applied for a remote customer service position at Pine Castle, a non-profit organization from Florida that helps people with intellectual disabilities and developmental disabilities.

After an exchange of messages and an interview with so-called hiring manager Jim Blake, he got the job.

The next step for our viewers was to purchase equipment to work from home – with a cash receipt for $ 4,820 from the new employer.

But there was a problem with this check.



“It’s pretty obvious it’s a fake check,” said Professor Bill Cress of the University of Gubernars, also known as a professor of fraud.

We brought Kresse to help us understand where things went wrong. The obvious red flags are that the check is printed in different fonts – and also lists the name of the payer, which should be Pine Castle.

“It seems to me that it was a deal to cut and paste,” Cress said.

Another red flag was a lot of work from home equipment, which our audience had to buy – which even included a laminator.

Despite the fact that the swindler pretended to be from Pine Castle, the information he gave about the company was far-fetched. The fraudster claimed that the non-profit organization has 107 branches and is based in Italy.

“They’ve essentially stolen the identity of what looks like a very decent nonprofit in Florida,” Cress said.

We called Pine Castle. Jim Blake doesn’t work there, they’re not in Italy and have no connection to that country, and they don’t have positions that require a laminator.

“It’s bad on many levels,” Cress said.

Once victims of fraud make a so-called check into their own accounts, they are even referred to a fake website to buy this equipment to work from home. Fortunately, our viewer’s bank marked it as a fake, so he didn’t buy anything.

So how can you make sure the work is legal? Be sure to call the phone number on the company’s website and make sure everything comes true.

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