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HOUSTON (AP) - The Houston FBI is warning the public about "virtual kidnapping" schemes in which a telephone caller demands payment for the return of a family member or friend when no actual kidnapping has taken place.

The FBI said Friday that perpetrators may be targeting medical professionals, including doctors and dentists. The FBI says that in the last few weeks it has fielded calls from medical professionals in the Houston area who were targeted. In June and July, the FBI got multiple reports from medical professionals in McAllen, Laredo, Brownsville and Del Rio, Texas.

The FBI says that although callers will make the victim believe they are being watched or were personally targeted, the fraudsters are actually making hundreds of calls in hopes that some of those targeted will fall for it.

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