MANHATTAN (CN) – Nine Israelis were arrested Friday and one is a fugitive after bilking elderly U.S. citizens of $2 million in a telemarketing fraud scheme, federal prosecutors said. The scammers told victims they had won “substantial cash prizes” in a lottery but needed to pay “several thousand dollars” in fees to claim their prizes, according to the indictments.
There were no prizes, there was no lottery, and the defendants stole “as much as tens of thousands of dollars” apiece from hundreds of people, prosecutors say. The defendants allegedly operated out of a boiler room in Israel.
Arrested on charges of telemarketing fraud were Guy Mayo, Elad Mayo, Asi Almakias, Moran Goldgarb, Lior Orgad, Orelya Belahsan, David Yamin, Mor Galanti, and Yaniv Kalbers. Shai Kadosh is a fugitive.