The great Internet car scam(s)

Right now I’ve got two cars on eBay. A Subaru Impreza STI and a very rare 1997 Nissan Stagea RS4. Someone is trying to scam me. In fact, two different people are trying to scam me at the same time. How do I know? I know becasue I’ve had it before. About 3 years ago someone offered to give me nearly £3k over the asking price of a car (bringing it to nearly £12k). If this wasn’t enough to send alarm bells ringing the cheque they sent me was from a tiny pet shop in the middle of nowhere. I know because I rang them up. I tagged the scammers along, called the Police but unfortunately even the officer I spoke to on the phone conceded that little was likely to happen, even though I had the scammers mobile number (it sounded as though he worked in some kind of call center).

Anyway, let’s start with the Stagea. I thought I’d try a small ad in facebook.com as I’ve never tried a marketplace listing before. Sure enough, this garnered a message from a Mr K. Brown (from the US) who seemed incredbly keen to secure the car ‘for his client’, who is buying it as a present for his son ‘in Delmark’ (wherever that is).

Hello,
Good day,I saw your advert where you placed it and I think it suits my client’s requirement , I am interested in your car, I would like to know the condition of the item, i like what i see in the picture.
I would like to know what your best price would be to enable me make an immediate purchase .
Payment will be made by cheque or banker’s draft, I will be looking forward to hear from you.
You can contact me on this 4470319***** or 4470319*****
Thank you for your time.

Kindly mail back into this Email Adds —————***********@hotmail.com

At first I was defensive and replied back with a stern:

Best price is £4195, payable by debit card or cash.

Then I became curious and playful and decided to tell him that £3000 would be fine. He replied, via facebook.com with:

I will be okay with the price .If you want to have it sold to me,a physical contact address will be needed and the name to be written on the check,please,p.o.box wont be prefarable,so i could have check sent out to you.Please i will awiait your reply.And my shipping agent will come pick up at your place when ready.The shipping fee will be included as an overdraft on the payment made out to you,My client his buying this as a gift which have to be presented to his SON in Delmark
Please get back to me with these informations to enhance payment as soon as possible, the latest condition of the car, Name that will be on the payment slip(Certified Cheques/bankers draft ), Full contact Address including postal code and finally the Tel/Personal mobile number

MAIL BACK TO ———***********@hotmail.com

I’ve sent him my work address and my own name to appear on the ‘cheque’. If what I think will happen, happens, I should receive a shady cheque in the next couple of days. I have a strategy I intend to persue so will keep you updated…

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3 responses to “The great Internet car scam(s)

  1. Hey,

    I put my van up for sale on facebook and got 2 e-mails remarkably similar to yours. I decided to check on google for scams like this before I went any further with these guys, and I’m glad I found your article. Just curious if anything further has happened with your cars, or these weird guys?

  2. First up, it’s clearly a scam. It didn’t feel quite right. No questions were asked about the car and the ‘buyer’ seemed keener to give me money than ensure the car he was ‘securing’ wasn’t a dog.

    Anyway, I think I got a reply a little later, like about a week later, but I’d already sold the car. Luckily, I work in the motor trade and after a while you know what kind of questions people should be asking. If they’re not asking questions about the car and/or are reluctant to even see the car before purchasing it then it’s probably a scam. Tell them to go forth.

  3. Arthur B. McHall

    I found your blog through google. I found the SAME scammer that is trying to get you and your 2 cars.. This guy is using two different id names!! charterbuslee AND cnorman8383 . I copied & pasted below the scammer’s inquiry with 2 other ebay auctions..

    1st one is:
    ebay item number: 110203451400
    Hello, I saw your item and I’d like to buy it. Please contact me at my work e-mail address: martinscorderett@aim.com Very interested, thanks. – charterbuslee – 572-653-6611 –

    2nd one is:
    ebay item number: 190181839469
    Hello, I saw your item and I’d like to buy it. Please contact me at my work e-mail address: martinscorderett@aim.com Very interested, thanks. – cnorman8383 – 557-118-4293

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