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Posted on Wed, Feb 6, 2013 : 6:15 p.m.

Sheriff's office warns of credit card scam, but no local cases reported

By Kyle Feldscher

Washtenaw County residents probably don't have to worry about a scam involving flowers, wine and a credit card reader, even though they may have gotten an alert about it Wednesday.

According to a Nixle alert sent out by the Sheriff’s Office, a person delivering a gift of flowers and wine may ask the recipient to use a credit or debit card to pay a $3.50 delivery charge. "Paying" with the card allows the scammer to steal the victim's account information and then use it to get money at ATMs.

But Derrick Jackson of the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office said nothing like this has been attempted locally.

"It's just a heads up," he said.

He said the information was passed along by another police agency , but he wasn't sure which one.

According to the alert, a company called Express Couriers may call homes to confirm a resident will be home to receive a package. About an hour after the call, a person shows up posing as the delivery man.

According to the alert, the man delivers “a beautiful basket of flowers and wine.” The man requires a credit or debit card to be swiped to pay for a $3.50 charge he says is necessary for the delivery of the wine. A week later, charges come from ATM machines across the country because the credit card machine the man used created a “dummy” card with all the resident’s account details.

A Google search turns up information about a a nearly identical scam that happened in 2008 in Sydney, Australia.

Anyone who experiences a similar suspicious incident is encouraged to call his or her local police agency.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Thu, Feb 7, 2013 : 4:24 a.m.

If I received a gift that I was charged for...I probably wouldn't accept it and would wonder which one of my friends/family/associates were so cheap...

Jeff Renner

Thu, Feb 7, 2013 : 12:21 a.m.

While this may be true, and says it is, it is hardly new or even timely. Snopes says it dates back more than four years to Australia. Unless there are more recent, documented cases, perhaps copy-cats, I think it is an unnecessary warning. These kinds of things take on a life of their own, and it reminds me of the Mickey Mouse LSD scare of a few years ago.