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New York - Israel-Based Defendants Arrested In Lottery Telemarketing Fraud Targeting U.S. Citizens

Published on: September 26, 2008 02:56 PM
By: VIN News
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New York - The FBI, announced today that Guy Mayo, Elad Mayo, Asi Almakias, Moran Goldfarb, Lior Orgad, Orelya Belahsan, David Yamin, Mor Galanti, and Yaniv Kalbers, all residents of Israel, were arrested today on charges that the defendants engaged in a lottery telemarketing fraud scheme which obtained approximately $2 million from elderly victims in the United States between 2007 and September 2008. Shai Kadosh, who is also charged in the scheme, is presently a fugitive. This case involves the largest number of Israeli citizens ever to be provisionally arrested by Israel in anticipation of extradition.

According to the Indictments filed in this case in Manhattan federal court: The defendants participated in a fraudulent scheme in which hundreds of elderly victims in the United States were informed that they had won substantial cash prizes in an international sweepstakes lottery, but that in order to claim these prizes, they first needed to pay several thousand dollars in fees. In fact, there was no sweepstakes lottery and the victims never received any cash prize, even after many victims sent as much as tens of thousands of dollars to the defendants and their co-conspirators in Israel.

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New York Field FBI Assistant Director Mark J Mershon stated: “Foreign lottery and sweepstakes frauds are especially pernicious because they target a vulnerable segment of our population. No one should underestimate the pitchmen in these schemes, who can be as persuasive as they are unethical. We only hope this investigation serves as a warning to others that operating from outside the U.S. does not necessarily make you unreachable.”

The investigation was conducted with ve work of the FBI and the Tel Aviv Fraud Division of the Israel National Police.



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Read Comments (21)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Sep 26, 2008 at 03:14 PM Anonymous Says:

does this have anything to do with the story in lakewood that was reported by vin a few months ago ?

2

 Sep 26, 2008 at 03:18 PM Anonymous Says:

The National Bank of Uganda just announced that I won a substantial prize in their lottery...

Also, the Ministry of Finance in Nigeria has alerted me that I am the next of kin to a wealthy British businessman who perished in a car accident in Nigeria and I am the sole heir.

How many people in the USA are actually that naiive, and I am amazed that Israelis are behind these scams now...

3

 Sep 26, 2008 at 03:40 PM Informed Consent Says:

Most of the world's population, including the United States has something called "average intelligence". Jews have a disproportionate number of "above average intelligent" people - possibly blinding us to the reality of the world at large, or, in some instances, taking advantage of them.

These are "phishing" schemes where millions of emails are generated and even if only the smallest percentage of a percentage respond and are gullible to the scam, it makes it worthwhile to these criminals.

4

 Sep 26, 2008 at 03:45 PM Yitz Says:

I got a strange call - it sounded like an echo - telling me to get ready for Pesach 5769 when I will become Mashiach. Did anyone else get such a call? nly then will I be convinced that it was a fake. Otherwise, I will get ready.

5

 Sep 26, 2008 at 03:39 PM Anonymous Says:

the polish government imformed me that I won ten million dollars, that's 10 dollars per year for a million years......

6

 Sep 26, 2008 at 04:18 PM Anonymous Says:

Well Yitz maybe you will become Mashiach! Keep working on it!

7

 Sep 26, 2008 at 04:35 PM Paulson Says:

I got an e mail from the Finance minister of the Republic of America stating that he has just won a lottery for 700 billion dollars and needs my help as an american citizen to claim it .He said if I dont help him then the money will end up going to just a few banks instead of to citizens like myself .

8

 Sep 26, 2008 at 04:51 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #3  
Informed Consent Says:

Most of the world's population, including the United States has something called "average intelligence". Jews have a disproportionate number of "above average intelligent" people - possibly blinding us to the reality of the world at large, or, in some instances, taking advantage of them.

These are "phishing" schemes where millions of emails are generated and even if only the smallest percentage of a percentage respond and are gullible to the scam, it makes it worthwhile to these criminals.

That's not what "phishing" is.
You are confusing two completely different things.
This is a "mystery shopper" or "foreign bank transfer fees" scam. No phishing at all.

Phishing is when an email proports to be from a legitimate website (banking, paypal, etc) and asks you to click a link in the email to login to your account. The email contains a valid-looking link to that company's login homepage.
However, when you click the link - it actually sends you to a fake website (which is designed to look like your "real" login page you are expecting). The fake website requests you to login with your usual password - and then the password is collected by the scammers (so they can access your accounts, etc). The next page either says "error" or simply closes.
You are subsequently unaware that you just gave a scammer your username and password to your bank account.

That's what "phishing" is...

9

 Sep 26, 2008 at 04:59 PM formaly Says:

the best way to avoid phishing is not that hard,

assume you get an email from ebay or your bank or paypal instead of clicking on the link provided in the email go to the web site yourselves from your browser

10

 Sep 26, 2008 at 05:17 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
Anonymous Says:

does this have anything to do with the story in lakewood that was reported by vin a few months ago ?

yes it does and for all those who were commenting back then that the bachur was guilty here is your proof that he was also a victim. they caught these guys only with his copperation. Next time be dan lekaf zechus

11

 Sep 26, 2008 at 06:16 PM Anonymous Says:

I have heard of stories where legit people fell in, while thinking they were smarter.
The operation is like this,
1, You are told you won or similar.
2, You say you will not send money.
3, They agree that they will wire money to you but give them access to your account to wire in and out of.
4, They send a stolen transfer to your account and within hours wire out 90%
5, Days or weeks later your bank tells you that a wire sending in funds previously was funds that should not have been yours and, by the way, where are all the funds?
6, You are on the hook for all the money!

12

 Sep 27, 2008 at 07:52 PM Yankel Says:

I'm against the $85,000,000,000.00 bailout of AIG. Instead, I'm in favor of giving $85,000,000,000 to all Americans as a "Dividend". To make the math simple, let's assume there are 200,000,000 bonafide U.S. Citizens 18+

Our population is about 301,000,000 +/- counting every man, woman and child.. So 200,000,000 might be a fair stab at adults 18 and up..

So divide 200 million adults 18+ into $85 billion that equals to a hefty "$425,000.00"

My plan is to give $425,000 to every person 18+ as a "Dividend" Of course, it would NOT be tax free. So let's assume a tax rate of 30%.

Every individual 18+ has to pay $127,500.00 in taxes. That sends $25.5 Billion right back to Uncle Sam.

But it means that every adult 18+ has $297,500.00 in their pocket. A husband and wife have $595,000.00.

What would you do with $297,500.00 to $595,000.00 in your family?
Pay off your mortgage – "housing crisis solved"
Repay college loans – "a great boost to new grads"
Put away money for college – "it'll be there"
Save it in a bank – "create money to loan to entrepreneurs"
Buy a new car – "create jobs"
Invest in the market – "capital drives growth"
Pay for your parent's medical insurance - "health care improves"

Remember this is for every adult U S Citizen 18+ including the folks who lost their jobs at Lehman Brothers and every other company

If we're going to re-distribute wealth let's really do it...instead of trickling out

If we're going to do an $85 billion bailout, let's bail out every adult U S Citizen 18+

As for AIG – liquidate it and Sell off its parts. Sell off the real estate. Let the private sector bargain hunters cut it up and clean it up.

Here's my rationale. We deserve it and "AIG doesn't" we were not invited to the last 10 years of "party time" bonuses

And remember, The this plan only really costs $59.5 Billion because $25.5 Billion is returned instantly in taxes to Uncle Sam

13

 Sep 26, 2008 at 06:58 PM murray Says:

Sorry-don't feel bad for anyone with that combination of greed,and stupidity; even if they are older than dirt seniors. 1. you didn't enter this "lottery" or sweepstakes in the first place, so how could you have won? 2. "You won" means $$ coming in, Not going out.

14

 Sep 27, 2008 at 08:49 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #12  
Yankel Says:

I'm against the $85,000,000,000.00 bailout of AIG. Instead, I'm in favor of giving $85,000,000,000 to all Americans as a "Dividend". To make the math simple, let's assume there are 200,000,000 bonafide U.S. Citizens 18+

Our population is about 301,000,000 +/- counting every man, woman and child.. So 200,000,000 might be a fair stab at adults 18 and up..

So divide 200 million adults 18+ into $85 billion that equals to a hefty "$425,000.00"

My plan is to give $425,000 to every person 18+ as a "Dividend" Of course, it would NOT be tax free. So let's assume a tax rate of 30%.

Every individual 18+ has to pay $127,500.00 in taxes. That sends $25.5 Billion right back to Uncle Sam.

But it means that every adult 18+ has $297,500.00 in their pocket. A husband and wife have $595,000.00.

What would you do with $297,500.00 to $595,000.00 in your family?
Pay off your mortgage – "housing crisis solved"
Repay college loans – "a great boost to new grads"
Put away money for college – "it'll be there"
Save it in a bank – "create money to loan to entrepreneurs"
Buy a new car – "create jobs"
Invest in the market – "capital drives growth"
Pay for your parent's medical insurance - "health care improves"

Remember this is for every adult U S Citizen 18+ including the folks who lost their jobs at Lehman Brothers and every other company

If we're going to re-distribute wealth let's really do it...instead of trickling out

If we're going to do an $85 billion bailout, let's bail out every adult U S Citizen 18+

As for AIG – liquidate it and Sell off its parts. Sell off the real estate. Let the private sector bargain hunters cut it up and clean it up.

Here's my rationale. We deserve it and "AIG doesn't" we were not invited to the last 10 years of "party time" bonuses

And remember, The this plan only really costs $59.5 Billion because $25.5 Billion is returned instantly in taxes to Uncle Sam

yankel what if it only equals $425.00 per person?

15

 Sep 27, 2008 at 09:31 PM AuthenticSatmar Says:

Yankel,
With the math you just gave us, you must be the CEO of AIG. It is people that believe the garbage, without bothering to take a calculator to see if it's correct, that create panic and insecurity. My guess is you like ObamaMath as well, and will vote for his tax cut. Here's a man that wants to cut taxes, while at the same time admitting he wants 800,000,000,000 800 billion in new spending. It is the same Obama that said congressional pork earmarks were "only" 18 billion.

16

 Sep 27, 2008 at 09:40 PM shtinker Says:

what's wrong with you "Yankel" u gotta buy a new calculator or get your self new AA Battereis $85.000.000.000 divided to 200 million comes out to FARSHTINKENE!!! $425.00 it barley covers 4 parking tickets from Bloomberg. even the $700 billion would only put $3.500 in our pocket. OK this money we can all use now for Yom Tov between the sukkah. asrik. Lulev. New Pungelow....etc.

17

 Sep 27, 2008 at 09:07 PM Policeman Says:

Yankel (#12) your plan is wonderful, and that is the greatest economic idea ever. Unfortunately, #14 is right, and it's only $425. But still, if we could carry out your plan... Maybe you should consider running for office!!

18

 Sep 27, 2008 at 10:58 PM Tzaddik ben Oshir Says:

You must believe in "new math"The old type of math tells me that the most you would get in gross income would be $

19

 Sep 28, 2008 at 12:04 AM bigwheeel Says:

Reply to #12  
Yankel Says:

I'm against the $85,000,000,000.00 bailout of AIG. Instead, I'm in favor of giving $85,000,000,000 to all Americans as a "Dividend". To make the math simple, let's assume there are 200,000,000 bonafide U.S. Citizens 18+

Our population is about 301,000,000 +/- counting every man, woman and child.. So 200,000,000 might be a fair stab at adults 18 and up..

So divide 200 million adults 18+ into $85 billion that equals to a hefty "$425,000.00"

My plan is to give $425,000 to every person 18+ as a "Dividend" Of course, it would NOT be tax free. So let's assume a tax rate of 30%.

Every individual 18+ has to pay $127,500.00 in taxes. That sends $25.5 Billion right back to Uncle Sam.

But it means that every adult 18+ has $297,500.00 in their pocket. A husband and wife have $595,000.00.

What would you do with $297,500.00 to $595,000.00 in your family?
Pay off your mortgage – "housing crisis solved"
Repay college loans – "a great boost to new grads"
Put away money for college – "it'll be there"
Save it in a bank – "create money to loan to entrepreneurs"
Buy a new car – "create jobs"
Invest in the market – "capital drives growth"
Pay for your parent's medical insurance - "health care improves"

Remember this is for every adult U S Citizen 18+ including the folks who lost their jobs at Lehman Brothers and every other company

If we're going to re-distribute wealth let's really do it...instead of trickling out

If we're going to do an $85 billion bailout, let's bail out every adult U S Citizen 18+

As for AIG – liquidate it and Sell off its parts. Sell off the real estate. Let the private sector bargain hunters cut it up and clean it up.

Here's my rationale. We deserve it and "AIG doesn't" we were not invited to the last 10 years of "party time" bonuses

And remember, The this plan only really costs $59.5 Billion because $25.5 Billion is returned instantly in taxes to Uncle Sam

Yankel. Your plan is wonderful. And I know the country where it can work . That Country is called UTOPIA And we all hope to emigrate (Yes, to EMIGRATE, not toIMMIGRATE) to that place one day !!!

20

 Sep 28, 2008 at 03:43 AM Gotta bridge to sell Says:

I received the following email last week:

I am Mr.Song Lile a credit officer of the Hang Seng Bank Ltd, taiwan.An Iraqi named farouk bassem,a business man made a numbered fixed deposit for 12 calendar months, this is valued to Fifteen Million United State Dollars only in my branch.Upon maturity several notice was sent to him, even during the war, four years ago(2004).Again after the war another notification was sent and still no response came from him.

We later found out that farouk bassem and his family had been killed during the war in a bomb blast that hit their home at Mukaradeeb. After further investigation it was also discovered that farouk bassem did not declare any next of kin in his official paper as including the paper work of his bank deposit. So, Fifteen Million United States Dollars is still lying in my bank and no one will ever come forward to claim it.
What bothers me is that according to the laws of my country at the expiration of six years the funds will revert to the ownership of the taiwan Government if nobody applies to claim the funds, My proposal is to put you as next of kin and have the funds released to you for us to share 40% for me 40% for your assistance and the balance 20% will be for any expenditure incured by you to make sure this project is completed.
Should you be interesting executing this with me; indicate your interest by sending me Your response with your name,address,occupation and phone number to reach me at my personal email address below:

Anyone want to buy a bridge?

21

 Sep 28, 2008 at 02:45 AM Fortune Says:

With all these problems starting in America, we can see the writing on the wall...Time to leave the GOOD OLE USA...The party is over, sorry to say

22

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