Police have issued a warning after a Griffith man sent over $5000 in gift cards to an overseas scammer pretending to be an Australian Federal Police officer.
Between 11:22am and 12:57pm on Tuesday, the 29-year-old man received six phone calls from a number connected with the AFP headquarters in Sydney.
The caller claimed to be an AFP officer and demanded the victim buy gift cards to avoid a warrant being issued for his arrest.
The man then purchased $5500 of gift cards from Target and Coles, taking photos of the back of each and sending them to the scammer.
A short time later he contacted Griffith Police Station and asked if he had been scammed.
Police contacted the number used to scam the man and found it was a switchboard number for the Sydney AFP, which the scammer had used to disguise their real number.
The victim was advised to contact Target and Coles to request the cards be cancelled and his money returned.
A Murrumbidgee Police District spokesperson said scams like this are not uncommon and local residents should always be on alert.
"This is a common scam used by overseas fraud offenders to scam gift cards from their victim," the spokesperson said.
"They disguise their number with that of an Australian number to falsely cause the victim into believing it is a genuine phone call.
"Police would like to re-iterate that no company is going to request you buy them gift cards to pay for any type of fine."
Scam artists regularly conduct scams through gift cards as it is less traceable than being sent money through credit cards or bank accounts.
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