VALPARAISO | An 84-year-old Portage Township woman and her adult daughter lost $1,000 in an elaborate scam involving a claim that a family member was in legal trouble in Mexico, according to Porter County police.
The elderly woman told police she received a call Friday from an individual whom she believed was her grandson.
The man said he was involved in an accident in Cancun, Mexico, and needed $1,800 to retrieve his passport and be released from a courthouse, police said.
The man's mother then picked up the phone and asked why his voice sounded funny. He said he had stitches on his lip because of the accident. The man also knew details about the family and was able call back on the mother's cellphone.
The mother went to Walmart and transferred the maximum $1,000 to Hugo R. Perera-Ramirez, who was supposedly the young man's attorney, police said. She later transferred another $800 to Osiel Cospilla-Garcia, but canceled the second batch of money when her son called and said he was not in Mexico.
Both transactions were sent to Quintana, Cozumel, Mexico, police said.