ARIZONA NEWS

Court officials warn of spoof requests to pay fines for missing jury duty in Arizona

Mar 21, 2024, 4:35 AM | Updated: 5:54 am

inside of a courtroom....

The Judicial Branch of Arizona in Maricopa County is cautioning residents about fraudulent phone calls demanding payment of fines for allegedly missing jury duty obligations. (AP File Photo)

(AP File Photo)

PHOENIX — Valley court officials are cautioning residents about fraudulent phone calls demanding payment of fines for allegedly missing jury duty obligations.

Such calls are fake as the only entity that would request fees associated with missing jury duty would be a judge in court, according to the Judicial Branch of Arizona in Maricopa County.

“The phone scam is elaborate and very believable. The fraudsters misrepresent themselves as law enforcement and threaten people with jail if they don’t pay their fines. They will even go as far as providing the name of a real detective,” Jury Administrator Matthew Martin said in a press release Tuesday.

“If you receive one of these calls, please disconnect and reach out to us to verify any claims being made.”

What to know, what to do regarding the fraudulent scheme

Scammers that request such payments will typically ask that they be paid in the form of a prepaid debit card, court officials said.

Previously, residents were sending prepaid cards to the jury office, which raised concerns because the office does not accept payments by mail.

“We had a juror send us a receipt for payments in the amount of $300 for failure to appear to jury service,” Martin said. “We hadn’t even summoned this juror, but the scam caller told them they missed their date of service and owned a fine.”

Anyone that is asked over the phone to pay fines for missing jury is advised to not give out personal information, write the number down, then call police, court officials said.

If anyone is ever in doubt of whether they’ve been summoned or not, they can check by calling the jury office at 602-506-5879.

Victims in Arizona lost an estimated $324.4 million in 2023 due to similar scams, according to FBI data.

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Court officials warn of spoof requests to pay fines for missing jury duty in Arizona