As gasoline prices approach record highs in Iowa, residents are being warned to be on guard for petroleum-related scams. State securities regulators are expecting a rise in oil and gas rip-offs, as schemes are already under investigation in Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas and Wisconsin. Iowa Securities Bureau chief Craig Goettsch says “In a time of low interest rates and a shaky stock market, it’s crucial investors view promises of high returns with little or no risk with skepticism.” The Kentucky case involves officials with the Vision Oil Company who claim God, not geology, was the key to finding oil. Letters to potential investors read “God gave me a vision of three oil wells.” Goettsch warns Iowans to: beware of cold callers and high-pressure sales tactics, read carefully any written material, and before investing, check the company out with the state Securities Bureau at 800-351-4665.
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