WASHINGTON, DC (NEWS CENTER) - Last year we told you about a Jamaican lottery scam that was bilking Maine Senior citizens out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Now the story is making national news and has the attention of members of Congress.
The US Senate Special Committee on Aging held a hearing Wednesday afternoon to investigate the scam. Maine Senator Susan Collins is the ranking member of that committee. She invited a couple of people from Maine to share their stories. York County Sheriff's Department Chief Deputy Bill King spoke about his investigation into the scam that conned a local 82-year old woman out of 100-thousand dollars.
"Some question if it even raises to a crime at all because people are willing giving away their money. Others mock the victims for falling for it", said King.
Kim Nichols traveled to the hearing in Washington from her home near Bangor to tell members of Congress how helpless she felt as her father ignored her pleas to stop sending money.
"They seemed to have a strange hold on him. It almost seemed like he was brainwashed", Nichols said.
Her father was taken for $85,000.
The hope is the federal government will step up its efforts with the Jamaican Government to stop the scams where they originate and prevent other seniors from being victimized.