Man arrested in India for allegedly collecting about $300M in IRS phone scam

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) — A 24-year-old man is arrested in India in connection with an IRS telephone scam.

The Mississippi Public Service Commission says Sakar Thakkar was arrested in Mumbai as he arrived by plane from Dubai.

Authorities said it appears that Thakkar collected around $300 million by calling customers over the phone, claiming to be with the IRS. They believe he is the mastermind behind the scheme.

“This is an excellent reminder about how important it is to register your home and cell phones on the Federal and Mississippi No-Call List,” said Central District Public Service Commissioner Cecil Brown said. “Once registered, you must file complaints when you receive these illegal calls so that authorities can subpoena phone records and catch these criminals. This is the best chance we have for shutting down these kinds of operations.”

Below are some tips from the IRS.

Note that the IRS will never:

  • Call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer. Generally, the IRS will first mail you a bill if you owe any taxes.
  • Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
  • Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.

Remember: Scammers Change Tactics — Aggressive and threatening phone calls by criminals impersonating IRS agents remain a major threat to taxpayers, but variations of the IRS impersonation scam continue year-round and they tend to peak when scammers find prime opportunities to strike.

Get more tips on the website for the IRS.

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