Residents have discussed this possible scam for many months on at least one local newsgroup.
Over the weekend, according to a media report, police arrested a Brooklyn man for conducting a similar scam. It is unknown if he is the same person who has doing this for many months, but the stories seem similar.
According to NJ.com: "Port Authority police arrested a Brooklyn man Friday who admitted to scamming Hoboken PATH train riders, officials said....[the man] was charged with theft by deception after police took him into custody sometime around 6 p.m."
Plainclothed police in the PATH station saw him "dressed in business attire, [allegedly] pretending to phone someone and then loudly claiming, for all in the train station to hear, that he lost his wallet and needed money."
A passenger offered the man $14.
However, another passenger had reported the same routine to police two days earlier, so they moved in.
The story says that the man allegedly "admitted carrying out the scam on a regular basis."
More details will be published when they can be verified by the Reporter.