Scammer bilks over $16,000 from local man

OKEECHOBEE — A 45-year-old Okeechobee man fell victim to a scam artist recently and ended up losing over $16,000.

Deputy Ryane Ammons, of the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO), spoke to the victim Friday, May 19. The victim reportedly told the deputy he was first contacted by a man named Devant Jackson.

Via the victim’s email, Jackson told the local man he would receive $700,000 in grant money by paying Jackson $7,000. The victim was then instructed to send the money through a bank to an account in the name of TolJan Investment. That account number was 291023244380, added Jackson.

The victim was then told to take a photograph of the receipt and send the photo via text message to the phone number 201-426-6210.

According to the deputy’s report Jackson then contacted the victim and told him before he could receive his money he would have to pay a $9,500 stamp fee. That fee was to be sent to a bank account in the name of Oladimeji O. Moses.

After paying $16,500 to the scammer, the victim was contacted by his bank and told that he had fallen prey to a scam. Even though the victim paid out over $16,000, he has not received any of the ‘grant’ money.

The victim had saved his email conversations with Jackson and turned them over to the deputy. The printout of those conversations will be placed into evidence, stated Deputy Ammons.

Eric Kopp is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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