80-year-old Gaston County man loses nearly $5,000 in Green Dot card scam

80-year-old Gaston County man loses nearly $5,000 in Green Dot card scam

GASTON COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - A Gaston County man claims he lost nearly $5,000 in a Green Dot card scam.

Robert Love Sr. told WBTV he received a phone call from a man in late July informing him that he had missed federal jury duty. The man told Love he would need to pay him thousands of dollars in order to avoid going to jail.

Love said the man sounded professional and believable. He fell for the scam.

Love said he withdrew money from a local bank and spent hours driving around purchasing green dot cards. He said he would put $500 on each card and read the barcode number to the man on the phone. During the ordeal, the man claiming to be a federal official told Love not to hang up the phone.

Love said eventually his phone died and he soon learned he had been scammed. According to a police report he lost $4950 to the scammer.

"I was very upset," said Love. "I don't have $5,000 to throw away, but I've never been in jail and I didn't want to go to jail."

Gaston County Sheriff Alan Cloninger said he has received four or five calls regarding similar scams in recent weeks. He advises anyone who receives a suspicious call from someone looking for money to contact local law enforcement before making any sort of payment.

Love hopes his story will warn others not to fall for the scam.

"It's a shame, but most lessons are learned the hard way," Love said, "and I did learn a lesson."

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