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Leading Chicago Criminal Defense Lawyers Michael Leonard and Matthew Chivari on FBI Report on Elder Abuse

by | May 8, 2024 | Firm News

Leading Chicago Criminal Defense Lawyers Michael Leonard and Matthew Chivari on FBI Report on Elder Abuse. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) recently (May 2, 2024) released its Report on Elder Fraud.

In sum, the FBI is attempting to report and convey information to the public that criminal “scams” are taking place on a wide-scale basis that are targeting elderly members of society. In particular, the FBI is reporting on, and warning about, the use of technology to further such criminal offenses. The “tactics” purportedly being employed include “phishing, spoofing, extortion, and other web-based fraud,” as noted by the Los Angeles Times.

Here is what the FBI is reporting as the most “common frauds” perpetrated upon the elderly (defined as those over 60):

  • Confidence/Romance Scam: Criminals pose as interested romantic partners through dating websites to capitalize on their elderly victims’ desire to find companions.
  • Tech Support Scam: Criminals pose as tech support representatives and offer to fix nonexistent computer issues—gaining remote access to victims’ devices and, thus, their sensitive information.
  • Cryptocurrency Scam: Scammers convince targeted individuals to withdraw large sums of cash and deposit into cryptocurrency ATMs or kiosks at locations provided by the scammers. Once cash is deposited and converted into cryptocurrency, the scammer transfers it to other cryptocurrency accounts.
  • Investment Scam: Investment fraud involves complex financial crimes often characterized as low-risk investments with guaranteed returns. They comprise of advanced fee frauds, Ponzi schemes, pyramid schemes, market manipulation fraud, real estate investing, and trust-based investing such as cryptocurrency investment scams.

You can view a full copy of the Report and the FBI’s findings at: 2023 Elder Fraud Internet Crime Report ( This Report likely foreshadows a greater emphasis on the Federal prosecution of these types of crimes by United States Attorneys’ Offices across the country. Perhaps surprisingly, such cases are not always clear cut and sometimes involve issues of agency/authorization.

Michael Leonard

Matthew Chivari

Leonard Trial Lawyers

May 8, 2024