STATE OF KANSAS
Tenth Judicial District
OFFICE OF DISTRICT ATTORNEY
Steve Howe, District Attorney
White Collar Crime Division ~ Consumer Protection Division
PRESS RELEASE - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
From: Steve Howe Date: March 15, 2010
READERS DIGEST SWEEPSTAKES SCAM
On Monday, March 15, 2010, the Olathe Police Department alerted District Attorney
Steve Howe of a potential Readers Digest Sweepstakes scam being conducted in the
Johnson County, KS area.
Over the weekend Olathe Police Department was contacted by individuals who had
received telephone calls from fraudsters claiming to represent The Readers Digest
Sweepstakes advising them they were winners of a $32,000.00 cash prize. The catch,
they were then contacted by the IRS advising them they would have to pay 9% taxes of
As with any of these scams the District Attorney warns individuals not to fall prey to
scam artists who have the technology to create convincing counterfeit checks. Fake
corporate checks that are so authentic looking they can often times fool even the most
informed bank tellers.
The District Attorney cautions individuals to protect themselves from these types of con
games by discarding offers from sources that ask you to pay fees, taxes or other charges
to claim a prize. No legitimate company would do that. If you haven’t entered a
legitimate sweepstakes – it’s difficult to be a winner. Foreign lotteries are illegal, and
last but most importantly, if something seems too good to be true, most likely it is.
If you have been a victim of a sweepstakes scam, please do not hesitate to contact the
Johnson County District Attorney’s Consumer Hotline at 913-715-3003.