The U.S. Marshals Service is warning the public of a nationwide telephone scam involving individuals claiming to be U.S. marshals, court officers or law enforcement officials seeking to collect a fine in lieu of arrest for failing to report for jury duty. The U.S. Marshals Service does not call anyone to arrange payment of fines over the phone for failure to appear for jury duty or any other infraction.
To appear more credible, the scammers may provide information like badge numbers and the names of actual federal judges and courthouse addresses. Victims have been told they can avoid arrest by paying a fine using a reloadable credit card, and were urged to call a number and provide their own credit card number to initiate the process. The Marshals Service urges the public not to divulge personal or financial information to unknown callers, even if they sound legitimate. Actual court orders can be verified through the U.S. Clerk’s Office.
If one believes to be a victim of the jury duty scam, report the incident to local law enforcement department, or local U.S. Marshals or FBI office. For internet related fraud, the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center can be contacted at www.ic3.gov.