Preventing Elderly Scams

9 years 10 months 5 days ago February 02, 2007 Feb 2, 2007 Friday, February 02 2007 Friday, February 02, 2007 5:18:42 PM CST in News

Marsch was a teacher for 32 years, so he's given and received his share of lessons. And though some companies may not admit to taking advantage of people, life taught Marsch otherwise.

"My mother passed away about three years ago. She was 85. And I know there were several things I got involved with mom that tried to get her information through the mail and take advantage of her at her age," explained Marsch.

So just what makes mail scams such an attractive offer? The fact that you can just put something on paper, and drop it in the mail. That's what has Marsch concerned. He decided to take action, and helped organize Senior Sting 2006, an effort to collect 8,000 pieces of mail sent to the elderly.

"In a lot of cases, some companies have responded and said they'll stop sending mail in Missouri, which is a great result. We don't want these fraudulent operators sending in their bogus mail to Missouri consumers," explained Travis Ford, of the attorney general's office.

Of course, the battle may never be completely won, so Marsch has some advice, next time you walk to your mailbox.

"I think if you get something and it seems too good to be true, it probably is," he said.

Still teaching after all these years, it's just another lesson from Mr. Marsch.

Attorney General Nixon's office has more than 300 legal actions pending against 27 companies identified in the sting.

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