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 In the scam before I realized it...now what?

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farkus
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Joined: 02 May 2009
Posts: 3


PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 5:35 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I was selling a fairly inexpensive item on an online site. I got an email from a "buyer" who wanted to know if it was still available. I replied that it was and got a reply that the buyer definitely wanted it, asking for my mailing address to send a check. I replied with this information.

I knew it was a scam as soon as I got another email saying "The check was mailed but it was accidently for too much so would you please cash it and wire the excess to (insert third party here.)"

The check arrived overnight. Probably cost more than the asking price for my item to mail it. The tracking number shows it originated in a completely different state than the return address. The street and city are valid but I can't look up the street number of the name of the sender. The check inside (obviously printed with an inkjet on check paper) has a business name with an incorrect address. The zip was valid and I was able to find a business by that name and address in another state.

Since the scammer got my address up front, and has a confirmation number that I got the check, what next? Do law enforcement authorities really care about catching these people or should I forget about that and just get myself out of it gracefully? I could say the item was lost or damaged and please cancel the check, as it is not a money order or any other pre-paid form.

Any advice? Should I supply you any details, or is my generic (anonymous) description of the scam enough for you to recognize it?
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B8er
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 5:52 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Farkus, welcome to Eater and well done on realising that you were being scammed.

From the description that you've given, this sounds like a standard overpayment scam. As you have realised, the cheque that you have received is a fake. The scam works on the basis that it can take the banks many weeks or months to realise that the cheque is a fake and by the time they claw the money back from your account, you will already have sent the overpayment.

The people who sent you the cheque and you are to send the money to are quite likely 'mules' (innocent third parties who are also being conned into working with the real perpetrators of the scam).

If I was you, I would cease all communication with the scammers, don't bother telling them that the item is damaged. The scammers will accept that some people will see through their scam and will just forget about you and move on to the next victim.

It might be worth taking everything that you have received to your local Law Enforcement, but I'm not sure what they will do. But at least you have covered yourself by reporting it.

It might also be worth PMing one of the Moderators here or on our sister site ScamWarners with the details of the persons who sent you the cheque and who you were to wire the money to.

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manbiteslion
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 6:20 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

You can tell them that the bank advised you that the cheque was a fake, so you took it to the police station and that the scammer should never speak to you again. Then never answer another call or email from them (especially as they have your real-life name and address etc). They already know the cheque is fake, they will go away pretty quickly.

Well done on spotting it before you were conned, let this one drop, and read the stickies here to learn how to bait safely, then torture other scammers safely anonymously if you want revenge!

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GomerPyle
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 6:39 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Educate your Lad.

Tell him it was obviously fake as it omitted the positronic hologram. Wink

No bank will even touch a cheque without one and you nearly got charged for the damage it did to the computer.

It may not be safe to bait him - but perhaps you can have a little joke. We call it a slap, and is what a Lad deserves for trying to scam you.

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spot
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 8:41 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

What frustrates me in cases like this, is when a craigslist type seller receives a counterfeit check that was mailed from within the US, realises that it is fake and reports it to the Police, the Police don't want anything to do with it because the intended victim hasn't lost any money.

However ... if the Victim banks the check he can soon find himself answering some very difficult questions and possibily find himself facing charges of Attempted Fraud and Money Laundering ...... not to mention the bank closing his account and screwing up his Credit Rating.


..... 90% of my baiting time is with craigscammers I'm happy to say. ....bastards Evil or Very Mad

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farkus
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Joined: 02 May 2009
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 8:59 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I wonder what would happen if I say something like this to the scammer.

"Oh, wonderful, I see your check is drawn on bank XXX. What a coincidence, that is my bank, too! I am good friends with the manager. I am sure they will have no problem with the check, since they can verify the funds immediately."
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redshoes17
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Joined: 28 Feb 2007
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 9:09 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

The scammer will not care and simply urge you to cash the check. Listen to the advice above. Stop corresponding with the scammer using your real name and address.

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spot
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 9:26 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

In my option the Original Poster should take manbiteslion's advice.

You have received a counterfeit cheque from him . The way I see it you will have three main options:-

* Take the cheque and any packaging to your local police and file a report, although they won't do much with it unless you have lost money in the scam .... although the Postal Inspector (if you are in the USA) would be interested.
* Write "Fake" over the front of it and stick it on your office wall as a memento.
* Rip it up and bin it.


If you don't go for the first option I'd go for the second option ..... it makes a good talking point when you have friends around. Smile

Then write to him and tell him that you tried to bank the cheque and the bank told you that it was fake. You might want to add that you were arrested and spent two nights in the cells for attempted fraud !

It's an occupational hazard for this kind of thing to happen to a craigscammer ..... he was hoping that you would send him money before you or your bank discovered the check was fake.

He is trying this very same scam on with dozens of others at the same time and will soon move on when he discovers that you are onto his game.

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farkus
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Joined: 02 May 2009
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 10:04 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

spot wrote:
He is trying this very same scam on with dozens of others at the same time and will soon move on when he discovers that you are onto his game.


I am sure of that because one of his replies was to "undisclosed recipients."
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Titania
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PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2009 2:43 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ Also, I'd be very surprised if he called your item by name in his initial email. Didn't he call it "the item"? Wink

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PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2009 7:09 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Hi farkus

I am glad to hear you figured things out before you lost any money. The advice you have received is sound.

You can simply stop corresponding with the lad. He will continue to write to you and might even threaten to have you arrested or have you sued. He will say whatever pops into his mind but rest assured it's all lies. You can just ignore anything he writes to you. It won't be long until he gives up.

You can and probably should report the matter to your local police department. What action they will take I cannot advise but crimes should be reported to the authorities. The police will do something though even if that is only to document the incident. Paper crimes are incredibly hard to investigate and often leads go no where. Whoever is listed as the sender is not the lad. People who choose to send out forged or fake checks know better then to leave a paper trail to them

I don't recommend check baiters to file police reports and farkus was not check baiting. Farkus's RL information was used so it is not a bad idea to have the matter documented.

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PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2009 12:15 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

i think he will continue to hassle you until he realises there is no point.
if you stop communicating, he will keep contacting you, hoping to get money from you.
if you would find that distressing, email him to say you know it is a fraud.
so emailing him should make him go away.
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ScammedOut
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Joined: 19 Jan 2009
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 3:45 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
Didn't he call it "the item"?


That's always an indication of a scam. They'll call it an "item" even if it's a horse.
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