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COVID related scam finds the wrong target

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Sometimes scams come the old fashioned way – via mail.

Constable Dustin Classen, of the Delta Police Economic and Technical Crime Unit, found a suspicious stock market promotion in his mailbox this week. Coincidentally, he’d just learned of it after speaking to a Delta resident who’d found the same letter in her mailbox.

The letter in question had no return address, and came in an envelope that says in bold red letters “CORONAVIRUS AFFECTING MARKETS: READ NOW.”

The envelope containing an investment scam, that came to Cst. Classen’s residence.

The letter claims to be from a stock analyst and geologist and makes exaggerated claims about a BC gold mining company. The letter predicts a 500% return on investment.

The BC Securities Commission issued a news release April 8 about the scam, warning the public “to exercise extreme caution about aggressive promotion of Crestview Exploration Inc., a B.C. gold mining company.”

The letters have apparently been sent to BC, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan residents, notes the BC Securities Commission, which is the lead investigator regarding this matter.

“The public should be very cautious about making investment decisions based on any unsolicited materials, no matter if this comes via mail, text, email or social media,” says Cst. Classen.

“We are in a period of significant uncertainty, and unfortunately there are people who will be trying to profit in a variety of ways, whether presenting supposed opportunities such as this, or trying to take advantage of someone’s good will, or offering alleged financial relief.”

See the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre’s COVID-19 fraud alert for more scam and fraud precautions.