Watch: IRS Tax Scammer Calls Into Texas Police Department Demanding Payment or Arrest

Video of a Texas police officer speaking with an IRS scam artist is being shared widely on social media as the Midland Police Department looks to inform U.S. taxpayers of similar fraudulent calls.

Midland Police Officer Daniel Stief decided to have some fun with a man who mistakenly called the precinct to inform Stief that police are “looking for him” unless he doesn’t pay out a legal settlement of more than $8,000. The Midland, Texas, department posted the video earlier this month on Facebook, and it has now garnered millions of views. Officer Stief can be seen hunched over his phone holding back laughter as he is informed that the Internal Revenue Service needs settlement money.

“Yes, this is the IRS office. There is illegal allegation and a lawsuit has been filed against you by the IRS Department,” the scammer can be heard saying. “The total amount outstanding on your name is $8,140.”

Realizing it’s a blatant scam, Stief playfully prods back at the man’s claim the federal agency is preparing to sue. The scammer requests that he must go to an Apple store and purchase a gift card for the settlement amount.

“How do I pay this money so the cops won’t come and arrest me? How do I pay you guys?” Stief asks.

“Sir, you need to rush down to an Apple store,” the scammer responds.

After Stief suggests he could pay by check, the scammer responds that he needs the money within 45 minutes, or federal authorities will swoop in on the Texas police precinct.

The IRS says similar telephone and digital tax scams are frequently used across the country and spike in the months leading up to the April tax filing deadline.

“Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer,” the agency notes on its website. “If the victim refuses to cooperate, they are then threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license. In many cases, the caller becomes hostile and insulting.”

The IRS notes that scammers frequently use fake but common names along with bogus IRS badge numbers. Some scammers are able to recite the last four digits of a victim’s Social Security Number and often spoof the toll-free IRS help line on one’s caller ID. Follow-up emails and threats of jail time frequently require victims to pay quickly before considering the call’s legitimacy.

“It's IRS scam call season and nobody is immune, including Officer Stief. He was on the phone for over 30 minutes with six different 'IRS' representatives. He just wanted to know how to not get arrested!” the Midland Police Department wrote on its official Facebook page.

Texas is not the only place where scammers have mistakenly called into law enforcement agencies. Last week in Gwinnett County, Georgia, a scammer dialed in to a 911 emergency call center and demanded $5,000 be paid to the IRS immediately. The female dispatcher played along and returned the scammer’s call.

"I want to let you know you've contacted the Gwinnett County Police Department and we understand this is a scam. Hello? Are you still there?" the dispatcher can be heard saying.

The Midland Police officers made light of their widely spread video this week, releasing yet a second clip poking fun at the term going “viral.”