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Dunedin police are investigating a series of threatening telephone calls to Dunedin residents, including an elderly woman who was extremely upset when told her family members would be hurt, Senior Sergeant Kelvin Lloyd says.
Snr Sgt Lloyd said several complaints had been made by Dunedin residents who discovered threatening messages on their telephone answering machines.
Victims were not related but all received calls made by the same South Island number, Snr Sgt Lloyd said.
It was not a Dunedin number and police did not know why Dunedin residents had been targeted.
"The tone of the messages is quite concerning. One alleges that a family member of the victim owes money and threats have been made against them," Snr Sgt Lloyd said.
He urged anyone receiving such calls to contact Dunedin police.