NEW YORK, United States, Wednesday September 30, 2015 – A 46-year-old man has admitted that he was involved in a Jamaican lottery scam that defrauded elderly victims of about US$300,000.
Charles Hanks, of Rochester, New York, pleaded guilty to mail fraud before a federal judge yesterday. He will be sentenced on January 5 and faces up to 20 years in prison and a US$250,000 fine.
Prosecutors say that Hanks worked with a Jamaican group that operated a fraudulent sweepstakes telemarketing scheme. The scam targeted the elderly, some of whom lost their life savings when they fell for the trick.
The scammers had called their intended targets, telling them they had won a lottery and other prizes, and that they needed to sends thousands of dollars in fees in order to collect the winnings.
Hanks received money from the victims which he then forwarded to Jamaica after taking a cut.