SEATTLE (Legal Newsline) -- Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson issued a consumer alert Tuesday, warning the state's residents that calls claiming to represent various state courts and demanding money are a scam.

According to Ferguson's office, the scammers are calling residents claiming to represent the courts and demanding they wire money by 10 a.m. or be arrested.

"People who receive these calls assume the calls must be about outstanding fines or warrants they are unaware of," the attorney general said.

"It's only when they follow up with the court they discover there is no violation, and confirm they got scammed."

The Attorney General's Office said it believes the scammer is "spoofing" court phone numbers, so it looks like a court is calling.

Most recently, the scammers have used the Des Moines Municipal Court's phone number, the office noted.

The attorney general said residents should keep in mind that courts never call people to collect debts; non-payment of debt is not a crime; and most courts accept cash or credit cards and don't encourage wiring money as an option.

Ferguson said consumers should be skeptical of any call demanding money.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at

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