More Gold Fraud Likely as Economy Swoons - U.S. Agents

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"A lot of these scammers develop their scams following current economic trends and we're bracing to see gold being used as a carrot."

Investigators expect to uncover more fraud involving gold in a recession that has already exposed several Ponzi schemes and other crimes, law enforcement officials with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service said on Thursday.

Agents with the federal agency have been working with the FBI, U.S. prosecutors and other investigators on a series of scams from Ponzi schemes in financial investments and oil futures to gold coins all over the United States.

"It's the same scam but they are just selling different products," Ronald Verrochio, Postal Inspector in Charge of the New York division of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), said in an interview.

"A lot of these scammers develop their scams following current economic trends and we're bracing to see gold being used as a carrot," USPIS spokesman Al Weissmann told the seminar, which was attended by government agents, prosecutors, attorneys and victims of fraud.

New York division agents have helped uncover various scams involving selling unwitting investors gold coins, which turn out to be a fraction of their purported worth.

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