While out on bail, defendants are trying to prepare their legal defense and put their lives back together. So when scam artists specifically target those out on bail, it can seem especially heartless. Some bail bonds companies in the Longview Washington area are reporting just that is happening.
A number of bail bonds agencies say they've been contacted by someone claiming to be local law enforcement and then asking for a list of all of the people they've written bail for in the past 24 hours. The scam artists take that information and contact the recently released asking for money in relation to the bail bonds that have been posted. They are told they will be returned to jail if they don't remit the additional payments.
The threat of returning to jail is a powerful motivator for a defendant. It is quite easy to envision a defendant or their loved ones readily paying whatever sum of money was asked by con men in this situation.
Law enforcement reports it is a scam that is prevalent industry wide. Unfortunately, it seems to persist and is now taking its toll in Washington.