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A person by the name of Terry Stokes contacted this paper at the beginning of October in regards to placing a “Help Wanted” advertisement.
In an email Stokes requested the ad to run for four weeks and then gave full payment details, which were successfully processed.
The Tribune was contacted on Monday by an individual who had applied for the posted position, but she quickly caught on to several red flags.
The woman stated that she emailed the listed address and was then asked to speak with a gentleman by the name of Mark Hoffman.
Hoffman could only be contacted via Yahoo Messenger so she continued with answering his questions as though it was an interview.
After chatting online, the woman was sent a package by Priority Mail, which she said was scotch taped and looked to have a homemade tracking number.
There was a letter that had a cashiers check along with it in the amount of $2,900 and the money needed to be dealt with through Western Union specifically.
The woman was confident this was a scam so she called the bank and gave them the check number to clarify. They did so and alerted her that this has been an ongoing scam with the average check amounting to around $2,000.
She stated that the goal was to use this money to purchase the equipment needed to work from home for the posted position. The equipment had to be purchased from a certain website also.
The woman shared that there were several locations listed on the items she received from these scam artists including Tennessee and Georgia.
The address given to the Tribune from Terry Stokes was listed as Indianapolis, Indiana.
The advertisement reads “Help Wanted- Now interviewing- Customer Service F/T or P/T. We are actively searching for highly motivated individuals. Job consists of scheduling and conducting interviews with candidates and as a program specialist taking phone calls and talking to potential customers about our benefit plans. FT/PT Flexible schedules, Full training provided, Benefits, Opportunities for Growth, and more. Serious Inquiries Only! Email (Terrystokes005@yahoo.com) for more information.”