Friday, October 22, 2021
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Online hay scams; Alberta RCMP issue warning to farmers to be vigilant

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EDMONTON, AB – Farmers are being warned not to fall victim to online scams that target consumers looking to buy hay.

RCMP say demand for hay is high right now, given the extreme drought conditions this past summer and it appears fraudsters are trying to take advantage of that.

Across Alberta RCMP jurisdictions this year, various groups have scammed victims out of roughly $64,000. Mounties believe there are many more incidents which were never reported to police.

The fraudsters have been placing listings for hay on places like social media and buy-and-sell platforms, requesting immediate payment before buyers see the product.

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In all reported cases of hay fraud, Mounties say the maximum individual deposit sent to scammers was over $5,000, and the minimum was $1,000. Police stress it’s valuable to note that those who avoided being scammed had refused to give deposits in advance, insisted on speaking over the phone, and had paid cash upon delivery of goods.

RCMP say to avoid being scammed, things to look out for, include attractively low prices for hay and an ask for at least a 50% deposit.

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Patrick Siedlecki

Pat has been a mainstay in the CJOC News department from the time the station launched in 2007. He’s been in the position of News Director since then and has been anchoring daily news casts as well as reporting and working behind the scenes.

Community is important to him and keeping CJOC listeners and readers informed about what’s happening across southern Alberta and beyond.

Pat has been in radio broadcasting for the past 24 years, starting in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island in 1997 and then moving up island to Nanaimo for another few years before heading to Lethbridge in 2007.

Pat grew up in the small Saskatchewan farming town of Foam Lake. After high school, he went to Western Academy Broadcasting College (WABC) in Saskatoon prior to moving to the island.

Pat also spent several years broadcasting hockey in the BCHL as well as seven years as the radio voice of the Lethbridge Hurricanes in the WHL.

Pat has been working at Cornerstone Funeral Home in Lethbridge as a Certified Life Celebrant and Funeral Assistant since 2016.

News and sports have always been Pat’s passion from the time he was a teenager and he’s always been grateful to have had the opportunity to make that part of what’s been a fun and long radio career!

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