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News Release


Scammers Target Elderly with False Claims of Money Owed to Them

WEST PALM BEACH, FL (August 1, 2011) – Clerk & Comptroller Sharon R. Bock is warning Palm Beach County residents to beware of two potential scams that have generated recent calls to the Clerk’s office.

Two elderly callers to the Clerk’s office said they were contacted by someone named Jose Suarez, who directed them to send him $250 through Western Union. They were told that in return, Suarez would obtain probate case funds for them to which he claimed they were entitled.

When the victims called the Clerk’s office with the case numbers that Suarez had given them, the case numbers turned out to be invalid.

In a separate incident, an elderly, out-of-state woman who was trying to sell her timeshare property was contacted by someone claiming to be a Palm Beach County courthouse employee. She was told to send $649 through Western Union to Jose Suarez. In return, she was told she would receive $27,343 from an alleged timeshare victim’s fund.

“Employees of the Clerk & Comptroller’s office do not contact people by telephone and ask for money to be wired to them,” said Clerk Bock. “Be wary of any callers claiming you are owed money and asking for payment up front to help you get it.”

In each of these cases, the victims contacted the Clerk’s office rather than sending the money.

Anyone who believes they have been the victim of a scam should contact their local law enforcement agency.

For more information about the Clerk’s office, please visit www.mypalmbeachclerk.com or call (561) 355-2996.

The Florida Constitution established the independent office of the Clerk & Comptroller as a public trustee, responsible for safeguarding public records and public funds. Clerk Sharon Bock is directly elected by and accountable to Palm Beach County residents.  In addition to the roles of Clerk of the Circuit Court, County Recorder and Clerk of the Board of County Commissioners, the Clerk & Comptroller is the Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Auditor for Palm Beach County.

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