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(WHNT Huntsville)   Not news: Phone scammer tries to get money from elderly couple. News: When the scam fails, he threatens violence. Fark: Against a former FBI and CIA Director   (whnt.com) divider line
    More: Dumbass, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Judge, Jury, United States Department of Justice, Organized crime, Fraud, Jimmy Carter, United States  
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9296 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 Feb 2019 at 11:12 AM (9 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



114 Comments     (+0 »)
 
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2019-02-10 08:06:28 AM  
Over multiple phone calls, Keniel Aeon Thomas of Jamaica told the Websters he'd set their house ablaze or have a sniper shoot them in the back of the head...

This probably needed an "ironic" tag actually.
 
2019-02-10 09:38:12 AM  
Dumbass is correct. Persistence is good for some activities, but crime isn't.

Also this came to mind.
img.fark.netView Full Size
 
2019-02-10 10:15:46 AM  
It's funny because he threatened to send an imaginary hit team to take out the guy who knows real CIA hit teams.

That's just really bad staff work right there.
 
2019-02-10 10:55:31 AM  
localtvwhnt.files.wordpress.comView Full Size

"I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want. What I do have are a very particular set of friends, friends I have acquired over a very long career. Friends that make me a nightmare for people like you"
 
2019-02-10 11:19:08 AM  
Caller: "I'll kill you all, set your house ablaze, have a sniper shoot you!"

Webster: "Drone strike says what?"
 
2019-02-10 11:20:26 AM  
I have a friend who works for the canadian revenue service and he mentioned they got those scammer calls once in a while, they all had a lot of fun with them as the war dialer made its way through their office phone list.

Not nearly as funny as a scammer literally threatening an ex-CIA director though, that's one of those situations where I'd love to see the after math of a professional courtesy style response.

/these phone scammers are the scum of the earth, preying upon the gullible like they're some sort of real corporation or something
 
2019-02-10 11:21:52 AM  
I want more details on the part where he got $600,000 out the other guy
 
2019-02-10 11:29:04 AM  

drjekel_mrhyde: I want more details on the part where he got $600,000 out the other guy


That's what bothers me most about these horrible people. They prey on the elderly and take advantage of people who aren't smart enough or who have had a decline in their cognitive skills. My father got taken by a scammer. Fortunately, it wasn't a lot of money and my father figured it out pretty quickly. He was out a couple hundred bucks, but got a fairly inexpensive lesson. Other people aren't as lucky.
 
2019-02-10 11:33:00 AM  
Thomas, who is 29, received a sentence of almost six years in prison and then will be deported to Jamaica. He has been in jail in New York and DC since his arrest, where his attorney says he's been beaten multiple times because of his nationality.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Reading a "0" on my sympathy meter right now.
 
2019-02-10 11:33:03 AM  

Starkaryen: Caller: "I'll kill you all, set your house ablaze, have a sniper shoot you!"

Webster: "Drone strike says what?"


This is going to sound like hyperbole but I would be in favor or a few well publicized raids on phone scammers using Federal Gov't assets to conduct and carry-out the raids.  National news, drag their asses out in front of news cameras - follow-up story of an expedited trial putting their asses in jail for 20+ years.

House land line (don't ask) gets 10+ calls a day that caller-ID indicates are almost certainly spam/fraud.  Cell phone is starting to get almost that many.... In the case of cell phone spam I'm about that >< far away from supporting capital punishment for it.
 
2019-02-10 11:33:04 AM  

Big_Doofus: drjekel_mrhyde: I want more details on the part where he got $600,000 out the other guy

That's what bothers me most about these horrible people. They prey on the elderly and take advantage of people who aren't smart enough or who have had a decline in their cognitive skills. My father got taken by a scammer. Fortunately, it wasn't a lot of money and my father figured it out pretty quickly. He was out a couple hundred bucks, but got a fairly inexpensive lesson. Other people aren't as lucky.


The older the targets get, the better the chance is that they'll fall for it.   Before my aunt took over, my grandfather was getting taken in by BS junk mail ads that, 5 years earlier, he would have just thrown away.
 
2019-02-10 11:34:41 AM  
One of the victims, an 82-year-old Californian, responded to Thomas, who had called himself "Obama" on the phone, by sending him more than $600,000 in one year, prosecutors said.

It's hard to imagine this one being successful.

Man answers phone.
Man: "Hello?"
Scammer: "Hey. This is Obama. I've changed my health plan. Pay me a mandatory $600,000 or I shoot you in the head."
Man hangs up.
Wife: "Who called, honey?"
Man: "It was nobody. Just another one of those conservative Super PAC robocalls."
 
2019-02-10 11:34:49 AM  
"Howell was astonished the Justice Department hadn't brought Thomas to justice sooner after the Websters' 2014 ordeal, for which prosecutors filed a criminal complaint. He was not extradited from Jamaica."

Regular folks complain...nada.  Former big wigs complain...

it's GOOD to be the KING.flv
Youtube StJS51d1Fzg
 
2019-02-10 11:35:05 AM  

Fizpez: This is going to sound like hyperbole but I would be in favor or a few well publicized raids on phone scammers using Federal Gov't assets to conduct and carry-out the raids.  National news, drag their asses out in front of news cameras - follow-up story of an expedited trial putting their asses in jail for 20+ years.


I wish there was an expedited death penalty for shiat like this.  Preying on people with cognitive decline to steal money... irredeemable.
 
2019-02-10 11:37:26 AM  

Kuoxasar: Fizpez: This is going to sound like hyperbole but I would be in favor or a few well publicized raids on phone scammers using Federal Gov't assets to conduct and carry-out the raids.  National news, drag their asses out in front of news cameras - follow-up story of an expedited trial putting their asses in jail for 20+ years.

I wish there was an expedited death penalty for shiat like this.  Preying on people with cognitive decline to steal money... irredeemable.


I was going to type "and if a few of these scumbags should get just a little bit shot-dead during the raids, so much the better..."
 
2019-02-10 11:39:55 AM  
Batman The Dark Knight- Blackmailing Batman
Youtube 1z6o1GIEsQE


Yeah, good luck with that moron.
 
2019-02-10 11:40:57 AM  
 
WGJ [TotalFark]
2019-02-10 11:44:51 AM  

Kuoxasar: Fizpez: This is going to sound like hyperbole but I would be in favor or a few well publicized raids on phone scammers using Federal Gov't assets to conduct and carry-out the raids.  National news, drag their asses out in front of news cameras - follow-up story of an expedited trial putting their asses in jail for 20+ years.

I wish there was an expedited death penalty for shiat like this.  Preying on people with cognitive decline to steal money... irredeemable.


But call it a church and everything okay.
 
2019-02-10 11:50:30 AM  
Thomas: "I didn't really mean to hurt you guys."

Guess you shouldn't have said that you did, huh.
 
2019-02-10 11:53:00 AM  
... and that's about the only way to get in trouble as a phone scammer.  Law enforcement doesn't give a crap about the rest of us.
 
2019-02-10 11:54:22 AM  
img.fark.netView Full Size


"Boy, if life were only like this."
 
2019-02-10 11:54:39 AM  
I wish more of these scambags would call people who can go after them. They're a plague on this earth.
 
2019-02-10 11:54:55 AM  
"I really didn't mean to hurt you guys," he said, before speaking about his home country. "We love you guys. We love tourists."

Of course you do, now GFY, mon.
 
2019-02-10 11:55:39 AM  
How to deal with a Telemarketer by Tom Mabe
Youtube -7OgWcwgB50
 
2019-02-10 11:56:04 AM  

Unobtanium: [localtvwhnt.files.wordpress.com image 280x186]
"I don't know who you are. I don't know what you want. What I do have are a very particular set of friends, friends I have acquired over a very long career. Friends that make me a nightmare for people like you"


Came to make this reference
 
2019-02-10 11:56:37 AM  
I know that a lot of people make fun of the shiatty writing that tends to plague online news articles these days, but this article had some excellent writing.  For example, these two lines just made me laugh:

Thomas "said that the FBI and CIA would never find him," prosecutors wrote in their initial criminal complaint.
After his arrest in late 2017 as he got off a plane in New York to visit a friend, Thomas pleaded guilty to one extortion charge. He admitted to threatening the Websters.


That's just solid juxtaposition right there.
 
2019-02-10 11:57:32 AM  
Well since I'm late to the party, time to send everyone else to oblivion

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph​p​/Main/MuggingTheMonster
 
2019-02-10 11:59:35 AM  

WGJ: Kuoxasar: Fizpez: This is going to sound like hyperbole but I would be in favor or a few well publicized raids on phone scammers using Federal Gov't assets to conduct and carry-out the raids.  National news, drag their asses out in front of news cameras - follow-up story of an expedited trial putting their asses in jail for 20+ years.

I wish there was an expedited death penalty for shiat like this.  Preying on people with cognitive decline to steal money... irredeemable.

But call it a church and everything okay.


This wins the "obvious statement of the day" award.
 
2019-02-10 12:01:57 PM  

veale728: Thomas, who is 29, received a sentence of almost six years in prison and then will be deported to Jamaica. He has been in jail in New York and DC since his arrest, where his attorney says he's been beaten multiple times because of his nationality.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Reading a "0" on my sympathy meter right now.


that one got a genuine LOL outta me.
 
2019-02-10 12:03:51 PM  
"About a month later, Lynda Webster picked up a call from a blocked number on the Websters' home phone. "

How'd that happen?  I never get calls from numbers I've blocked.
 
2019-02-10 12:03:59 PM  
When I get a recorded call, or one from an unknown number that starts with something like "congratulations you just won a prize!" I hang up right away. Won't even give 'em the time of day.

Older people view the the telephone as some sort of serious, sacred instrument and you must never hang up on anyone because "it might be someone who really wants to speak with you. Hanging up is rude!!".

Nope. I just hang up, no time even to tell them "I'm not interested, thanks!".
 
2019-02-10 12:04:54 PM  

Ker_Thwap: ... and that's about the only way to get in trouble as a phone scammer.  Law enforcement doesn't give a crap about the rest of us.


It's not a matter of caring. It's a matter of scale. If all the law enforcement assets in the entire world were completely dedicated to this problem, they could barely make a dent in it.
 
2019-02-10 12:11:24 PM  

swankywanky: [Youtube -7OgWcwgB50 image 480x360][Youtube-video https://www.youtube.com/embed/-7OgWcwg​B50]


Wow, that is fake and bad.
 
2019-02-10 12:14:24 PM  

Day_Old_Dutchie: When I get a recorded call, or one from an unknown number that starts with something like "congratulations you just won a prize!" I hang up right away. Won't even give 'em the time of day.

Older people view the the telephone as some sort of serious, sacred instrument and you must never hang up on anyone because "it might be someone who really wants to speak with you. Hanging up is rude!!".

Nope. I just hang up, no time even to tell them "I'm not interested, thanks!".


I have to remind my mom she doesn't owe them any explanation. I've caught her trying to tell personal information as a reason to refuse.
 
2019-02-10 12:16:26 PM  

swankywanky: [Youtube-video https://www.youtube.com/embed/-7OgWcwg​B50]


Now there's a sound clip I haven't heard in decades, it was part of a gzip of audio files we passed around in the late nineties on message boards I think.
 
2019-02-10 12:16:54 PM  

Day_Old_Dutchie: When I get a recorded call, or one from an unknown number that starts with something like "congratulations you just won a prize!" I hang up right away. Won't even give 'em the time of day.

Older people view the the telephone as some sort of serious, sacred instrument and you must never hang up on anyone because "it might be someone who really wants to speak with you. Hanging up is rude!!".

Nope. I just hang up, no time even to tell them "I'm not interested, thanks!".


They appreciate that, since they're likely paying by the minute.  Just setting the phone down would cost them a lot more.
 
2019-02-10 12:18:40 PM  

Day_Old_Dutchie: When I get a recorded call, or one from an unknown number that starts with something like "congratulations you just won a prize!" I hang up right away. Won't even give 'em the time of day.

Older people view the the telephone as some sort of serious, sacred instrument and you must never hang up on anyone because "it might be someone who really wants to speak with you. Hanging up is rude!!".

Nope. I just hang up, no time even to tell them "I'm not interested, thanks!".


I've had some days where I'm in an extra snarky mood and I talk to them. I tell them I will bring them the money, I give them fake account info (usually acct number 8675309), act scared, believe every word they say, tell them I'll bring all $20,000 in iTunes gift cards and meet them at an address (give police station address).

Then I start trying to convert them to my religion of pancake worship and tell them they must invest the gift cards in the Holy Syrup Fund.

My record is 7 minutes.
 
2019-02-10 12:18:49 PM  

Fano: Day_Old_Dutchie: When I get a recorded call, or one from an unknown number that starts with something like "congratulations you just won a prize!" I hang up right away. Won't even give 'em the time of day.

Older people view the the telephone as some sort of serious, sacred instrument and you must never hang up on anyone because "it might be someone who really wants to speak with you. Hanging up is rude!!".

Nope. I just hang up, no time even to tell them "I'm not interested, thanks!".

I have to remind my mom she doesn't owe them any explanation. I've caught her trying to tell personal information as a reason to refuse.


I think that's a relic of growing up in the pre-cell phone days, when if someone called you, there was a good reason for them to; it was someone you either needed or wanted to talk to.

These days, I do not answer my cell phone unless it's a number already in my contacts.  If you have a real reason for calling, leave a voice mail and I will return the call.  Call me and leave no voice mail, fark you, you're blocked.
 
2019-02-10 12:18:53 PM  

veale728: Thomas, who is 29, received a sentence of almost six years in prison and then will be deported to Jamaica. He has been in jail in New York and DC since his arrest, where his attorney says he's been beaten multiple times because of his nationality.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Reading a "0" on my sympathy meter right now.


As well as a "10" on my bullshiat meter.
 
2019-02-10 12:20:25 PM  

Fano: Well since I'm late to the party, time to send everyone else to oblivion

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php​/Main/MuggingTheMonster


Yeah, I thought of that TV Tropes entry when I first read about this story yesterday.

. . .you called up someone who is a former Director of Central Intelligence, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a retired former U.S. Appellate Court Judge. . .and who currently sits on the Homeland Security Advisory Council. . .and your strategy was to demand money or say you'll send people after him?

This whole story is a real life version of something between Mugging the Monster and the "blackmailing Batman" scene from The Dark Knight.
 
2019-02-10 12:20:29 PM  

bo_loo: "Howell was astonished the Justice Department hadn't brought Thomas to justice sooner after the Websters' 2014 ordeal, for which prosecutors filed a criminal complaint. He was not extradited from Jamaica."

Regular folks complain...nada.  Former big wigs complain...


... and the government does nothing other than file an arrest warrant in case the target visits a US jurisdiction, which he fortunately did. Otherwise it would still have been ... nada, and the guy would have continued to prey on people from the safety of Jamaica.
 
2019-02-10 12:22:49 PM  
Oh, and here's the Wikipedia entry on said former DCI and Director of the FBI:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William​_​H._Webster

Yeah, not a guy who you'd want to get on the wrong side of.  Even at 94 he can still fark you up apparently.
 
2019-02-10 12:23:05 PM  
My current hatred is student loan scammers. "We're calling because you're two months behind!" Uh huh.
 
2019-02-10 12:25:44 PM  

jjorsett: bo_loo: "Howell was astonished the Justice Department hadn't brought Thomas to justice sooner after the Websters' 2014 ordeal, for which prosecutors filed a criminal complaint. He was not extradited from Jamaica."

Regular folks complain...nada.  Former big wigs complain...

... and the government does nothing other than file an arrest warrant in case the target visits a US jurisdiction, which he fortunately did. Otherwise it would still have been ... nada, and the guy would have continued to prey on people from the safety of Jamaica.


Exactly.

I got one of these guys to stay on the phone for a few minutes with me once after I let them know I wasn't falling for their bullshiat. He was at a call center in Afghanistan and just trying to make a living. His whole family was poor and hungry and his options were limited. I actually had a tiny (very tiny) bit of sympathy for him. He told me I'd be surprised at the number of people willing to give their credit card numbers to him. He told me by the time they are finished reading off the number, their card is maxed. He said authorities there don't give a damn and won't do anything about the call centers.
 
2019-02-10 12:25:47 PM  

Big_Doofus: swankywanky: [Youtube -7OgWcwgB50 image 480x360][Youtube-video https://www.youtube.com/embed/-7OgWcwg​B50]

Wow, that is fake and bad.


Yeah and somehow he was able to get three albums.
 
2019-02-10 12:26:21 PM  
FTFAThomas "said that the FBI and CIA would never find him," prosecutors wrote in their initial criminal complaint.

Looking back, Mr Thomas, is there anything you said to these people that you regret?
 
2019-02-10 12:26:36 PM  
Would like to know more about this "The scammer in Jamaica said he was watching the Webster's house - even described to Lynda what it looked like - and knew they hadn't been home the previous night."

I guess he could have linked the phone number to an address and found a photo of it online and when he called the previous night no one answered but more info in the story would have been better.
 
2019-02-10 12:31:31 PM  
media.giphy.comView Full Size
 
2019-02-10 12:33:34 PM  
I have noticed in the rare occasion when I talk to these phone scammers...IRS, Apple, Windows etc...they get really angry and aggressive when they realize you're on to them and just messing with them.
 
2019-02-10 12:36:25 PM  

thedumbone: Day_Old_Dutchie: When I get a recorded call, or one from an unknown number that starts with something like "congratulations you just won a prize!" I hang up right away. Won't even give 'em the time of day.

Older people view the the telephone as some sort of serious, sacred instrument and you must never hang up on anyone because "it might be someone who really wants to speak with you. Hanging up is rude!!".

Nope. I just hang up, no time even to tell them "I'm not interested, thanks!".

They appreciate that, since they're likely paying by the minute.  Just setting the phone down would cost them a lot more.


I haven't had a land line in many years but that was always my trick.  "Oh, i'm very interested in hearing about that but can you hold on a minute?"  Then set the phone down on the counter and walk away.
 
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