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Tasmanian woman’s $347,000 inheritance raises scam suspicions

Pulse Tasmania
Anna Phillips and her husband Robert. Image / Supplied Finders International

A Tasmanian woman thought she was being scammed when she inherited a slice of $347,000 AUD from a ‘random man’.

Anna Phillips, now an art teacher at an international school in Kyrgyzstan, was sceptical when she received a phone call advising her of her newfound share in a £180,000 fortune from a man she never knew existed.

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The 81-year-old distant relative, George Anderson, passed away in a UK nursing home in July 2019 with no known family or will.

Researchers from Finders International spent months tracing 26 beneficiaries across Australia, Malta, Canada and Kyrgyzstan to ensure the rightful heirs received their share.

Dr Phillips told the Liverpool Echo it was “just surreal” to find out she was related to George and that she had been tracked down as a beneficiary to his estate.

“It was totally unbelievable,” she said.

George’s mother, Elizabeth Philips, was one of ten children and the brother of Anna’s grandfather, making George and Anna distant relatives as siblings of their respective grandparents.

Philips said it was “such a shame” that she never knew him, but the whole process has helped put her back in touch with extended family.

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“While the inheritance is not life changing, it was of course a nice surprise. We paid some into our mortgage in Tasmania, and then gave some to our children.”

“It’s all about helping the next generation and has helped them in that regard.”

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