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Laguna Beach resident scammed out of $8,140 by bogus IRS caller

A Laguna Beach resident was misled into paying $8,140 over the phone to someone claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service, according to police.

After determining that the call Friday was a scam, the 48-year-old woman filed a fraud report with police. She called her bank but was unable to stop the transaction, police said.

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According to the police report, a voicemail left on the woman’s phone stated the caller was with the IRS and that she needed to call back immediately. When she called, a man who didn’t give his name told her an investigation of her taxes from 2012 to 2017 revealed that she owed the IRS $8,140 and that she must pay to avoid an arrest warrant.

She was transferred to various people who claimed to be IRS employees and was given steps to conduct a money transfer. The woman gave the caller her name, her bank’s name and her account routing number as well as her driver’s license number.

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Laguna Beach police Sgt. Jim Cota said fraudulent calls are common across the country and that the report will be submitted to the FBI for further investigation.

“Luckily, there have been no other reports of a loss from this type of scam [in Laguna Beach],” Cota said in an email.

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