Two Colorado Springs residents are suspected of receiving over $27,500 by fooling at least 19 people with a foreign lottery scam.
CSPD’s Financial Crimes Unit began to investigate in July of 2011, after someone in Winchester, Massachusetts was victimized through e-mails and phone calls. The victim was told he had won a large foreign lottery and would receive his winnings if he paid processing fees and foreign banking charges.
Investigators followed the requested fees and say the money was going to Andre O’Neil Allen and Denise A. Ratliff. CSPD also alleges the pair committed similar fraud against about 18 other victims.
Police have obtained arrest warrants for both Allen and Ratliff. Allen will be charged with 26 counts of theft and computer crimes. Ratliff is wanted for 1 count of theft and computer crimes.
Allen is described as a 22-year-old black male, 5-foot-10 and 180 pounds, with brown eyes and black hair.
Ratliff is a black female, 5-foot-2 and 139 pounds, with brown eyes and black hair.
Anyone with information about the whereabouts of either Allen or Ratliff is asked to contact police at 719-444-7000 or Crime Stoppers at 719-634-STOP.