LISBON -- The St. Lawrence County Sheriff's office is warning of a scam they say is being perpetrated by what they refer to as "gypsies" from Georgia.
A property owner in Lisbon reported to deputies that a group of painters offered to paint their residence, dairy barn and an outbuilding for $2,500, according to the sheriff’s office.
"The property owner was uncomfortable with the situation and felt that it was too good to be true and that he was potentially being swindled out of his money," the sheriff's office said in a prepared statement. "He did ask appropriate questions and as a result of this and along with some investigative work he established that these folks originated in the Augusta, Georgia area and are known as 'Irish Travelers' or more commonly as 'Gypsies.'
"Law enforcement officials in the Augusta area confirmed these practices and actively investigate any incidents that occur in their area."
The sheriff's office is warning county residents not too accept any deal that seems too good to be true, the statement says.
"Typically Irish Travelers offer a service such as tree pruning, paving or painting, but at times they sell merchandise to area businesses. They work throughout the country with the exception of their own back yard due to the fact that their practices are so well known," the sheriff's office says in the statement. "Irish Travelers use fictitious names and may even offer fictitious credentials. The trail they leave is very scant with little opportunity for retribution."
The statement says those who want to learn more about what they call "Irish Travelers" can go to http://www.fraudtech.org/travelers.htm