A fraud took place late in February when a 79-year-old woman attended the RCMP detachment in Stonewall to report that she was the victim of the 'grandparent scam.'

The woman said that she received a call a few days beforehand by someone claiming to be her grandson. He told her that he was in a motor vehicle collision in Winnipeg and was arrested and needed money for bail. She was instructed to take out $8,000 in cash from her financial institution and that it would be picked up at her home. The woman says she then received a phone call from someone claiming to be her grandson’s lawyer who advised her that the money would be picked up by courier, and told her not to tell anyone. 

A man then came by the home and picked up the money. The following day, she received more phone calls from the same suspect advising her an additional $8,000 would be required to pay fines and exonerate her grandson. The same pick-up process occurred. Further calls were received a couple days later asking for another large sum of money. When she went to her financial institution, the employee advised the victim of the possible scam and she reported it to the RCMP.

A suspect was scheduled to come by her residence later that day. RCMP intercepted him, and he was arrested without incident. He was also wanted out of Alberta on a warrant for fraud.

Nathanial South, 32, has been charged with Fraud over $5,000. He was remanded into custody.

Manitoba RCMP is warning residents of this scam as there has been an increase in this specific fraud. Since the start of this year, there were about 13 similar occurrences in southern Manitoba and an estimated total loss of approximately $70,000. RCMP says there are likely more victims of this scam and they're asking the public to report any similar frauds to your local police as soon as possible.

Corporal Julie Courchaine says, "Too many people are losing large sums of money to this scam, and we want Manitobans to be aware. Please bring up this topic with friends and family as education and awareness will help protect others from being defrauded."

March is Fraud Prevention Awareness Month.