By Jim Melwert

By Jim Melwert

ABINGTON TOWNSHIP, Pa. (CBS) — Police in Montgomery County are investigating a scam where a man claiming to be with the Fire Marshal’s office performs a bogus inspection, then threatens to shut a business down unless he’s paid immediately.

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Abington Township police say they have four cases of a man going into a business, saying he’s with the Fire Marshal’s office. He tells the owner there are repairs or inspections that need to be done immediately, or he’ll have to shut them down. He then demands, cash, anywhere from $11-$200 dollars.

Abington Police Deputy Chief John Livingood says while the Fire Marshal does do these inspections, they don’t do them unannounced and they would never demand payment on location.

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Livingood also says the scammer or scammers seem to know who to target.

“He is picking on small businesses who may not be aware of what the procedure should be. He has never gone into a large business where they have contracts that handle these kind of inspections.”

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Bottom line says Livingood, if you are unsure if someone is who they say they are, give police a call and let them sort it out.