Local News Briefs
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Fraud investigators believe a foreign-based boiler room operation is making increasingly aggressive and threatening calls to residential phone customers in Colorado and other states, demanding credit card payments for non-existent debts, say Attorney General John W. Suthers and Colorado Bureau of Investigation Director Ronald C. Sloan.
The con artists, who are reported to have noticeable foreign accents, represent themselves as officers calling from the “Colorado Department of Law and Investigations.”
Neither the real Colorado Department of Law – the Attorney General’s Office – nor the Colorado Bureau of Investigation collects any kind of debt or makes such calls.
CBI reports receiving three to four complaints a week from residents. Some victims are being called six to eight times within a couple of hours.
Law enforcement agencies in Colorado and other states indicate the scam is increasing in their areas. Even in other states, callers claim association with the “Colorado Department of Law and Investigations.”
Victims say callers claim the victim has failed to repay a payday or Internet loan for several hundred dollars, and demand payment over the phone using the victim’s credit card account.
Callers also demand Social Security numbers and tell victims that if they don’t make the payment, police officers will be sent to their homes. In some cases, victims report graphic threats of violence if they fail to pay.
“Consumers should never provide personal financial information over the telephone on calls they do not initiate,” Suthers said. “If you are unsure about a call purported to be from a law enforcement agency, ask the caller for call-back information and check it out online or through the phone book. And if a caller is engaging in threatening or abusive calls, hang up,” he said.
CBI ranks the scheme as the No. 1 fraud currently being attempted on Colorado citizens.
Four schools in the region are among those seeking grants from the Building Excellent Schools Today (BEST) financial assistance fund.
On Wednesday, the state Capital Construction Assistance Board reviewed grant applications from across the state seeking a total of $366.4 million in aid.
The assistance board will meet for four days during the last week of June to select which of these grant applications to recommend to the Colorado State Board of Education for approval. The list of recommendations will be presented to the state board for information and approval later this year.
From this region, the applicants include:
• Aspen Community Charter School in the Aspen School District: $5.9 million request with $4.6 million in local match for a new school building.
• Eagle County Charter Academy in Eagle County School District Re 50-J: $9.3 million request with $2.9 million in local match for a new school building.
• Roaring Fork School District Re-1: $386,585 request with $509,450 in local match to re-roof Sopris Elementary School in Glenwood Springs.
• Ross Montessori School of Carbondale, part of the Colorado Charter School Institute: $10.6 million request with $1 million in local match for a new school building.
Rifle Gap State Park and Harvey Gap State Park will open to boating on Friday, April 1.
To prevent the spread of aquatic nuisance species, including zebra mussels, quagga mussels, rusty crayfish and Eurasian watermilfoil, all vessels entering Rifle Gap Reservoir or Harvey Gap Reservoir must be inspected prior to launching.
At Rifle Gap, inspection stations will be open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. until May 15, when hours will be extended.
The inspection station at Harvey Gap will be open Friday through Sunday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., until May 15, when inspection hours will be extended.
For more information on Colorado State Parks or to purchase an annual parks pass online, visit http://www.parks.state.co.us.
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Between Thursday and Saturday morning, local law enforcement arrested nine people accused of soliciting children for sex as part of a sting operation.