Officials warn of swindles claiming to benefit Ukraine
Patricia Doxsey is reporting for the Daily Freeman there are hundreds of charitable organizations collecting donations to help the Ukrainian people, but the situation has not surprisingly also created an opportunity for fraud. “Many New Yorkers are eager to do their part to help the Ukrainian people, but scammers often take advantage of crises to exploit our generosity and compassion,” state Attorney General Letitia James said in a press release last week. At Woodland Pond in New Paltz recently a number of the residents at the retirement community were targeted via email by scammers. Those efforts were thwarted by employees of the Sawyer Savings Bank, after residents approached them looking to withdraw money from their accounts. Sawyer Savings Bank CEO Doug Sturges said, “They came in with emails that basically were saying ‘my relatives are in Ukraine and they don’t have any access to money, but if you send the money to me, I can get it [to] them." Bank employees urged the customers to instead work through a national organization if they want to donate money. A flier has been distributed at the facility, advising residents to protect themselves by checking with staff or family members before sending any money even if seemed unkind to not respond to the pleas for help. Ulster County District Attorney David Clegg said his office has not received any complaints about scams involving the Ukraine crisis to date. Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.