The Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office announced yesterday that a Mississippi lawyer was scammed out of hundreds of thousands of dollars:
The Secretary of State’s Office has been alerted to an internet scheme with international ties that bilked a Mississippi attorney out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The Mississippi attorney received an email from someone purporting to be Robert Larsen of Larsen Fabrics located in the United Kingdom. “Mr. Larsen” claimed a Mississippi company owed money on a contract and was willing to settle. “Mr. Larsen” employed the Mississippi attorney to collect the debt. The attorney was then informed the Mississippi company was prepared to settle.
A fraudulent settlement check was sent to the attorney, allegedly from the Mississippi company. The attorney deposited the check and wired funds to a Japanese account before the fraud was discovered. The Mississippi company had no knowledge of the scheme until contacted by investigators.
The Mississippi Bar warned lawyers the same basic scam in 2009. I’ve written about lawyer email scams multiple times on this blog. I’m not so much surprised that someone got scammed as I am that someone bought the same tired scam that worked 3 years ago. I used to get multiple emails per week trying to run this scam. It now seems like it is down to no more that 1 a month.
I don’t know who it was who fell for this scam, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t Bill M. Lott.