Melrose Police Department

**ALERT** IRS Telephone Scam

Police Chief Michael L. Lyle reports that the Melrose Police Department is receiving reports of citizens being contacted by scammers identifying themselves as Internal Revenue Service agents.

The callers are threatening residents with lawsuits and demanding that residents wire money for unpaid taxes through pre-paid debit cards, Western Union, Money Gram or bank money transfers. The scammer is very pushy and the residents are being threatened with arrest, seizure of property, and large fines.

These are *ALWAYS* fake phone calls. These are scams. Do not send money, by any method, to these people.

“When in doubt, hang up and call the police department,” Chief Lyle said. “Do not, ever, give these criminals money.”

If a victim gives away a pre-paid debit card number or makes a wire transfer, the money is gone and lost forever. There no way to recover the lost funds.

Characteristics of this scam include:

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:

REMEMBER: The IRS does not demand immediate payment, and IRS agents will never call about taxes owed without first mailing a bill

Also:

1. The IRS will not demand you pay back taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
2. The IRS will never demand you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card or money transfer
3. The IRS will never ask for credit card or debit cards over the phone
4. The IRS will never threaten to bring in local or other law enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying  taxes

If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to call the Melrose Police Department at 781-665-1212.