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"Unfortunately, thieves often prey on those most in need" Scam targets homeowners


CHARLESTON - Scammers purporting to be with banks as part of the recent landmark mortgage-foreclosure settlement have been working in West Virginia, the attorney general said.

Relief and benefits available under the settlement can include loan modifications, principal reduction, direct payments, free "underwater" refinancing and safeguards for servicemen.

The caller offers to tell the homeowner whether they're on the eligible list for an up-front fee of $500 or more. Additionally, they ask the consumer to provide bank account numbers and promise to deposit the settlement money directly into the consumer's account.

Thieves may pose as third-party companies "working with the settlement" or as a representative of one of the five participating banks.

"Unfortunately, thieves often prey on those most in need," said Attorney General Darrell McGraw.

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