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Warning: Fraudulent Phone Calls Regarding Contempt Orders Resurface in the District of New Mexico

Thursday, November 30, 2023

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The United States District Court for the District of New Mexico has recently been notified of individuals being targeted with a new phone scam. The targets have been told they are in contempt of court for failure to appear in federal court. The scammer may ask for personal identifiers or for immediate payment of fines, but this information is not always made during the initial call. This scam call is fairly sophisticated, and may use information from government websites or the name of an actual judge or employee of the U.S. District Court to legitimize their threats.

The U.S. District Court will never ask for sensitive information in an unsolicited phone call and will not assess a fine or penalty for failure to appear in federal court without first having the person appear before a judge. Initial notifications regarding a court appearance are always initiated by formal written correspondence through U.S. Mail.

It is a crime for anyone to falsely represent himself of herself as a federal court official and such an offense is taken very seriously by the federal judiciary. Persons receiving such a telephone call should not provide the requested information or pay any fines and should contact the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) at (505) 889-1300, selection option #1 when prompted, to report the incident. In the District of New Mexico, the individual may also contact the United States District Court at 505-348-2000 to verify that there are no matters pending before the court in their name.

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