TRISHNA AND KRISHNA SCAM ALERT

Posted on 09. Jun, 2010 in News

Consumer Affairs Minister Tony Robinson today warned Victorians to watch out for a telephone scam claiming to be raising funds for Bangladeshi twins Trishna and Krishna, who were surgically separated at the Royal Children’s Hospital last year.

Mr Robinson said callers were contacting Victorian households asking for $20 donations to bring the twins’ mother from Bangladesh to Australia for a visit, and request householders provide their credit card details.

“Victorians should be wary of callers who use the names Trishna and Krishna, Moira Foundation and the Royal Children’s Hospital,” he said,

“The Moira Foundation is not a registered fundraiser. Children First Foundation is the legitimate charity caring for the twins and its founder, Moira Kelly, is their legal guardian.

“All Children First collectors will clearly identify themselves and offer legitimate receipts, so Victorians can be assured their generous donations will go to benefit Trishna and Krishna.”

Mr Robinson said fundraising activities in Victoria were highly regulated and the Fundraising Act 1998 sets out strict criteria to ensure fundraisers were transparent and accountable.

Scam fundraisers risk fines of more than $14,000 for an individual or more than $28,000 for a company or imprisonment for up to12 months.

To ensure your donations only go to legitimate charities Mr Robinson said Victorians should:

  • ring the fundraiser’s hotline directly if you wish to donate over the phone;   
  • only hand over cash to a person wearing proper identification;
  • never give out credit card details if you are suspicious of a telephone caller, collector or website asking for donations
  • only hand over cash to a person wearing proper identification
  • always get a tax deductible receipt
  • be wary about donating to an unfamiliar charity
  • in the case of face-to-face collections, ensure the collection tin/container is sealed and clearly labelled with the fundraiser’s logo
  • if you are suspicious of a person collecting money in your local area, contact the charity and ask if they are aware of the collector
  • never respond to an unsolicited email asking for donations – even if it claims to represent a reputable fundraiser or seems legitimate.

 If you have enquiries about a fundraiser, or to find out if a fundraiser is registered, contact Consumer Affairs Victoria on 1300 55 81 81 or visit http://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/

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