Scammer tells 101-year-old woman: 'You're a criminal'

AN ALSTONVILLE woman is in shock after being told she was a criminal and would be arrested because she owed thousands of dollars to the tax department.

The woman, who is 101, received the scam phone call today and was lucky that her carer was at her home at the time to handle the abusive caller.

"They said she was a criminal ... he gave me his badge number and said he was from the taxation office," the carer said.

"He said she owed them $5000, and that if she didn't pay, they would take her house away from her and she wouldn't get the pension.

"He said she would be arrested ... he kept calling her a criminal.

"I let him rave on for quite a long time, but in the end I just said, 'No, you're the criminal here' and he hung up.

"If I didn't take that call off her, my client would have been so upset.

"She's 101 years old; she would have paid the money.

"It goes to show how vulnerable older people can be.

"It's very scary."

SCAMwatch says many people have reported similar scams and phone calls, and said it was time for people to be wary.

"The scammers may spin a range of stories about why an arrest warrant has been issued, including that you have failed to pay taxes," a spokesperson said.

"Be on guard, if you receive a phone call from someone saying you have an arrest warrant and asking you to pay a fee, hang up and do not respond."


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