Nfld. & Labrador

Extortion attempt: Senior scam victim tries to withdraw thousands from Mount Pearl bank

The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary says what it thought was a robbery at a TD Bank on Gibson Drive in Mount Pearl Thursday afternoon was really an extortion attempt.

Police warn about calls from fake calls from Canada Revenue Agency

Police officers are maintaining a heavy presence outside of TD Bank on Gibson Drive in Mount Pearl Thursday afternoon. (John Pike/CBC)

The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary (RNC) Criminal Investigation Division says a suspected robbery at a Mount Pearl bank Thursday was really a case of extortion. 

The RNC got the call from TD Bank on Gibson Drive at approximately 12:40 p.m. and responded with patrol cars and police dogs.  

Instead of a robber, they found a victim — a senior who was trying to writhdraw his life savings after a threatening phone call.

According to the RNC, a man in his 80s received a call from a very aggressive man claiming to be a police officer calling about fraudulent Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) returns.

Through what police called "very aggressive and convincing tactics," the caller forced the elderly man to drive to his bank and withdraw thousands of dollars.

The RNC said fortunately no money was transferred to the caller.

The Constabulary is now warning people that phone scams involving fake CRA agents and/or police officers are on the rise.

It said neither the CRA nor police services would call and threaten Canadians for money.

If you receive a similar call, the RNC asks that you hang up and call the Canadian Anti-Fraud Center at 1-888-495- 8501.