The U.S. Secret Service seized approximately $290,399 from an attempt to steal from an elderly couple from Wenatchee.

The alleged suspect befriended the couple through the messaging app “WhatsApp,” claiming they were a 35-year old traveling musician.

The suspect was able to convince the couple to send more than $20,000 over two years.

In February, the situation escalated when the suspect suggested they refinance their home and take out another mortgage, telling them the funds would be used for a real estate investment and bring in big returns.

The alleged fraudster instructed the couple to transfer mortgage funds to a title company that they controlled, where the suspect would attempt to send those funds to their own bank account.

This scheme came to a halt when one of the victims went to a Wenatchee-based title company to complete the transaction. The CEO of the title company became suspicious of the situation, who ultimately reported the incident to law enforcement.

The U.S. Secret Service were able to seize these funds before the suspect could access the account and will be returning the funds back to the couple.

Criminal charges have not been filed at this point in the ongoing investigation.

More From 610 KONA