WASHINGTON (AP) - It's the top complaint to a U.S. Senate hotline for seniors: fraudsters posing as IRS agents, threatening arrests and demanding money.
A Treasury Department official told lawmakers Wednesday that more than 10,000 people have reported falling prey to the so-called "IRS impersonation scam," many of them elderly Americans.
Phillip Hatch, who is 81, told a Senate panel via video that he received one of those calls at home in Portland, Maine. The caller told him there was a mistake on his tax returns and federal marshals were coming to arrest him unless he paid the money. Hatch lost $8,000. He says he wishes he hasn't been "so cooperative."
Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, chair of the committee, says the criminals target older people, who may be isolated and lonely.