Charity warns of email scam – NZPA 4 April 2011
A [legitimate] United States-based charity [CHOICE Humanitarian] is warning New Zealanders not to respond to unsolicited emails using its name and promising large sums of money.The emails asks people to accept charitable donations into their personal bank account and transfer the money to offshore accounts for CHOICE Humanitarian. They are promised 10 percent of the deposit for their help.
“The money sent offshore is supposed to be used for ‘charitable’ purposes. Of course, nothing in the offer is legitimate or real and the money transferred offshore is not sent to CHOICE Humanitarian to support our work abroad,” the charity’s chief executive, Leah Barker, said.
“Our organisation is about helping people, not about ripping people off,” she said. “It’s heart-breaking to think anyone would use our good name to hurt people. We sincerely hope no one has been taken in by this scheme.”
Detective Sergeant Dave Grace said police had contacted the bank concerned and were working hard to notify people of the scam.
“The public needs to be aware of the risks of receiving money by way of ‘donation’ then sending a portion off-shore. In this case, it is very likely a fraudulent money-laundering scheme,” he said.