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Sheriff’s Department warns citizens about fake money order scam

Investigators with the Crenshaw County Sheriff’s Office have seen a rash of frauds lately and are advising residents to be wary of fake money orders and other scams.

“We’ve seen a bunch of counterfeit money orders,” said investigator Ronnie White.

One way the scammers are operating is by placing orders over the internet and then paying with a money order.

White said one recent case involved the loss of nearly $20,000.

Scammers are also using another tactic where two different companies are used.

“They’ll say, ‘Oops, I sent you two money orders with the same amount. Can you cash one and send it back by Western Union?’ or something like that,” White said.

“If you do business with a money order, make sure you have it verified with the bank first,” White added.

White also suggested taking the same precaution with cashiers’ checks due to the large number of computer-generated money orders and cashiers’ checks seen recently.

Because of the time it takes to verify money orders through the bank, White advised that any business transactions initiated on Friday wait until the next week.

“Nothing is open on the weekends, so you have to be careful,” he said.