A 57-year-old Chinese woman picked up a Chinatown payphone in March and the voice on the line had good news. Apparently, she had won a $2 million lottery prize. To collect the money, the voice went on in Chinese, the woman would have to wire $6,000 (in taxes) to a bank account in Hong Kong.
She did that, but her prize didn't come. Instead, during a second phone call, the woman was told that additional charges required she wire another $12,000 to collect her $2 million. She did that.
By the time May rolled around, the woman had sent $100,000 and received nothing. At that point, it seems, she decided to call the police. That's when she found out she'd been scammed. She's not the only intended victim.