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District courts warn of new juror scam

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Once again, the federal courts are warning of a juror scam designed to trick unsuspecting people into giving their personal information.

At least 14 federal District courts have received reports of local residents receiving an email notifying them of their selection for jury duty and demanding they return a form with such information as Social Security and driver’s license numbers, date of birth, cell phone number and mother’s maiden name.

Moreover, the email warned that anyone who failed to provide the information would have to explain the failure to the court and could be penalized with fines and jail time. The email falsely claimed that it was affiliated with eJuror, an online registration program used in about 80 U.S. court districts.

The email is fraudulent. Anyone receiving an email like this should contact their local federal court.

Such scams are not new. The federal courts have been used in these types of cons since 2004, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation has released three warnings since 2005.

“The criminals are trying to cloak themselves in the authority of the court to try to squeeze valuable information out of people,” said a spokesman for the U.S. Courts. “People have to be on alert.”

Within the last month, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana has received reports from two people who received phone calls telling them they had missed federal jury selection and asking them for their financial information, according to Laura Briggs, court clerk.  

Also, six months ago, the Southern District got a report that someone had received an arrest warrant on what looked like letterhead from the federal courts. The document asked for personal information and provided a phone number the recipient could call to settle the debt.

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana has not gotten any reports of suspicious emails or arrest warrants from local residents, said Kurt Koch, manager for the Hammond and Lafayette divisions.  

The federal courts reiterated that eJuror never requests personal identification information be sent directly in an email response. Requests by courts to complete a qualification questionnaire would be initiated by formal written correspondence. These letters would then tell jury participants how to access an authenticated, secure online connection.


 

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  1. I grew up on a farm and live in the county and it's interesting that the big industrial farmers like Jeff Shoaf don't live next to their industrial operations...

  2. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  3. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  4. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  5. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

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