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Hugh R Thaar
Not quite a Newb


Joined: 13 Sep 2011
Posts: 40
Location: A Desert in NW USA via the Yorkshire Dales


PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 6:16 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Just joined. I have a retired Lieutenant Colonel from 800 miles away who has bought my crappy little boat unseen and has been called away (last minute) to the middle east on a gold prospecting contract. He will pick the boat up at Christmas. His check, for the full amount no haggle, (charges are worth it) should bounce next Tuesday earliest, so I am waiting for his part refund request on Thursday (his overseas contract extended no doubt) by my calculation.
I am going to need you guys (and god - abundant praises and all respect to him), to advise me
I am interested in hooking US scammers as they are excellent and polished and patient and more of a challenge than the 419ers from Africa.
Is there a forum dedicated to them ?
ok, setting up my IP free email now. Free VPN tunnel would be saucy
I am so looking fwd to this and Craiglist is such a honeypot
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jose_cuervo
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 6:53 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

In the other thread, Hugh R Thaar wrote:
Sounds an excellent endeavor. I posted in the main forum in error when all I wanted to do was introduce myself.
NO more errors - this is serious !
ok found that a gmail to myself from gmail website has no traceable ip and one from my outlook has a traceable ip - so that's good
I want to burn US scammers only as I think they are more of a challenge than the mugu mob.
I have one on the fishing line at the mo and he is in deep cover and perhaps using a yahoo email that he hijacked - serious effort ! How hard is it for them to hijack a yahoo email account ? He is good and it's fun and better than African bashing as its much more challenging. He cancelled our meeting as he had to go the middle east for 4 months at 2 days notice (to go gold prospecting) and its ok for me to keep the boat until then. I expect the part refund request via western union to abu dahbi to come in 2 or three days time as he still has a week before his check bounces

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HarmlessBunny
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 7:07 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Well good luck in wrangling USA based scammers. Those are hard to ferrett out. I wouldn't know anything about a thread on that, but good luck.

I live next to a Wester Union here in Canada and I see a bunch of guys go there on a very regular basis... I wish I could take them down (grrrrr).

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Hugh R Thaar
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Joined: 13 Sep 2011
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Location: A Desert in NW USA via the Yorkshire Dales


PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 7:19 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

HarmlessBunny wrote:
Well good luck in wrangling USA based scammers. Those are hard to ferrett out. I wouldn't know anything about a thread on that, but good luck.

I live next to a Wester Union here in Canada and I see a bunch of guys go there on a very regular basis... I wish I could take them down (grrrrr).


Apparently there are 370 active full time scammers just in little 'ole Utah ! So I reckon there are plenty to go around.
I want to have em running around some, and I have the time and patience.
Being English in origin, I can make out I am new to the USA and all naive and just waiting to get fleeced. My boat on craigslist got an immediate bite. It cost him $7 to send the check by 3 day mail ,so I think my dog might eat it next time so he has to send another.

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Morgain Le Fay
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:58 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ I got rid of a scammer when I listed our boats for sale on Craig's List.

The scammer wrote:

Quote:
Can I trust you? I am a boatswain on the high seas....yada
yada


I wrote back:

Quote:
No you cannot trust me. I am a seagoing Captain


I probably should have/could have baited him but I had too many REAL responses for my boats I was selling.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:40 am Reply with quoteBack to top

@ HRT.
Was the cheque received at your RL address Question

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Hugh R Thaar
Not quite a Newb


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 4:02 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

yes check to my rl address. (I know)
Thing is that I have checked this guy out using Realtors in his town and all the junk about gold prospecting checks out coz I have found him and his g/f in the gold mining club in 2008 and even their photos ! He claims he is LT Colonel in the USAF and even public records on his house show his previous add as McChord AFB Washington.EVERY indication is that this guy is a scammer, what with buying unseen, accessing my local craigslist from 800 miles way, check up front, story about having to be out of the country for months with 3 days notice before the pickup, --- BUT all about him and his g/f and his hobbies is checking out just fine ! You would have to be him to know all the stuff I have found out about him.

Do scammers use their own real address/name/bank/email ip etc and just brazen it out when the thing bounces?

Everything about the deal screams scammer but all his details check out genuine !

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DoraTheExplorer
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Joined: 18 Nov 2008
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Location: Magnolia, Mississippi


PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 8:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Hi Hugh and welcome to Eater!

1. Please don't use your RL addy to have checks sent to you. This is very unsafe and nothing we would ever recommend here on Eater. Always bait safe and that means never use any of your RL details.

2. Many scammers use the identities of RL people. Sometimes these RL people have been victims of the scammers in the past. Without knowing exactly the details, I would guess that you are not in contact with the real person but a scammer using that person's details.

If you think you have RL details, then I would highly suggest you PM these details to any of the mods here on Eater and have them check it out. They can pass the information on to one of the trained scam warners on our sister site and be checked out.

3.
Quote:
Apparently there are 370 active full time scammers just in little 'ole Utah !

How in the world do you know that? Laughing

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Hugh R Thaar
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Joined: 13 Sep 2011
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Location: A Desert in NW USA via the Yorkshire Dales


PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:00 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^
I was young, I needed the money - but that was last week.
Now I am up to speed.

I guess when you sell on craiglist, you have to give em your addy otherwise they cant come and buy it. The guy said don't release the boat until the check has cleared - then he gave me a pickup date 7 days after the check arrived and then he was suddenly sent on a 4 month contract to the middle east on 2 days notice. It is 798 miles from my house to his and its a used inflatable !

Now I know more about check clearing, I know that 2 months after its banked it can still be re-debited. For instance if the check was a forgery on a genuine account and the account owner didn't realize for 6 weeks.. Moral of the story is only accept CASH or money orders which can be swapped for cash at the Post office with ZERO recourse (don't pay into your bank)and do that before releasing the goods. Two methods only.

As it stands today, I have the boat and a pick up date of end November/early December. As long as it stands like that I am safe. If its a scam (and it has ALL the hallmarks) then I should get a 70% refund request email by western union in the next couple of days.. If it is a scam then he is a master at it but the final request for refund cannot be avoided and that's where they are stuck.

I will pass on details as you suggest for the board experts and report back on how this develops. I am neck deep in red flags but still I have a sneaky 10% thought it might be genuine coz there are eccentrics out there. I will need you guys' advice on how to play a really good US scammer if he makes the refund request.

The Utah fraud site gave me the numbers on how many scammers they have.
They must have found the master scammers handbook at the bottom of new york harbor too !

I think the MO with craigslist is to call them back on a local number in order to give them the addy for them to come and see the goods. Having said that, the first customer was 200 miles away too and he HAD a local number on his cell as he used to live in this town ! I reckon we cant cover every eventuality but 99% should be possible

Many thanks !

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DoraTheExplorer
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Joined: 18 Nov 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:15 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^ Did this man ever come look at the boat personally or did he just mail the check? And did get the check already and you have already deposited it into your bank account?
If this is the case then you need to print out the emails and go to your bank immediately and let them know you are concerned you may have deposited a fraudulent check. They can then work with you to verify and hopefully minimize the damage if it is a fake check.

With CL, a typical scammer isn't going to come to your house and look at the item and then pay cash for it. That is how you get away from the scammers. There is never a good reason to take a check or money order via mail when the buyer hasn't looked at the goods personally. (And I would still recommend cash even in person.)

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Hugh R Thaar
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Joined: 13 Sep 2011
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Location: A Desert in NW USA via the Yorkshire Dales


PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:29 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I deposited the check, but then when he got the 4 month overseas contract at 2 days notice, I smelled a rat and I went to the bank and asked the assistant manager to run checks on it. I have his name recorded. He confirmed after many phone calls that the check looked good in all its details but the parting shot was that 10 business should pass before I called back for confirmation. Even then, if the owner of the account hasn't seen it and its a forgery, it could be redebited MONTHS later

The 'customer' has a date to see the boat today but got his overseas call to leave the country today. Those are all red flags.

I would have accepted a money order in advance on condition I went and got cash without recourse at the post office before the boat was transferred.
That has to be safe, especially if I tell the clerk its from an unknown source and would he check it thoroughly before giving me the cash.

I even got done with cash in England. The Pakistani scrammer gave me £100 - ten - tens, and only the top and bottom were genuine - the rest were excellent photo copies which I only noticed in the sunshine the next day

A year later another Pakistani came to buy my car with cash (£6500) - I insisted we go to my bank first to pay it in because 'my eyesight wasn't very good'
The bank manager and assistant counted the huge plastic bag full of notes and said it was 20 short. The Pakistani laughed and said " You cant blame me for trying" and pulled out the final 20 from his pocket !!!!

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DoraTheExplorer
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:39 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

If this person never came to see your boat and sent you a check sight-unseen, then it is without a doubt a scam.

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Hugh R Thaar
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:51 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ I agree its a major red flag - he told me about his hobby of gold prospecting and how he planned to use a detector at my local gold mine when he came for the boat. I have traced both him and his g/f through the property address and they ARE in a gold prospecting club. So if he has stolen someone's identity, he even knows their hobbies etc... that would be VERY professional.
There is every red flag in the world but also some weird things like that which only the real person would know.

I used to work for a guy (for 5 days) who was a scammer on a big scale and he asked me to join in using my professional qualifications to con people. I skipped quickly and told the police and stood witness ! He didn't try and hide, he used all his real details but just kept ducking and diving til his victims agreed a percentage refund.

That makes me wonder whether this guy just brazens it out and uses his real details to assure the victims and then hopes to sicken off his victims when they try for refunds.

That's the only way I can reconcile him being 'real' and having a semi-truck load of red flags at the same time.

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DoraTheExplorer
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:58 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I didn't say it was a red flag. It is a scam. There is no way it is legit. You need to go back to your bank in person and discuss this with them. The check will be fake/fraudulent/stolen.

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Hugh R Thaar
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:02 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ as I say, I went to my bank in person 3 days ago and told them I was suspicious . I sat down with an assistant manager who made many phone calls and said the check wasn't suspicious.. I made a note of his name. I just posted all that so you must have missed it

It's pretty exciting really and I am looking fwd to my career as a scam exasperater.
He has to try for the refund in the next couple of days before it bounces so I will post what happens. Can't wait !

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DoraTheExplorer
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:16 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Hugh, I know you went to your bank once. That's why I said you need to go back. Wink

Maybe I am not understanding it all and there is something I am missing. But it sounds to me like you are really hoping this isn't a scam when every piece of evidence is showing it is a scam.

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doc holliday
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:22 am Reply with quoteBack to top

There is every possibilty it will not bounce at once.It may actually clear.That does not mean that you just took a scammer for his money.The check has to have the funds released to you in a set period of time.However,once it makes its way through back to the issuing bank,it can still be refused payment.You will then be liable for the money.Keep the check as a trophy after defacing it.Whatever you do DO NOT DEPOSIT IT.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:51 am Reply with quoteBack to top

doc holliday wrote:
......However,once it makes its way through back to the issuing bank,it can still be refused payment.You will then be liable for the money.


doc, I am experiencing this very thing with a 'relative' who gave me a check that keeps coming back to me and my account has been "held" (on hold) for that amount of money. I finally went to the bank today and said to just give me the check back because if it hasn't cleared all the times it went to the relative's bank, it is a DUD! New lesson learned: Don't take checks from relatives!

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Hugh R Thaar
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:51 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ oh I have no illusions about taking him for his money but I did deposit it 9 days ago and my bank has checked it with the drawer's bank and says there are no contra indications at this stage.

I have not drawn on it and I won't - so then when it is re-debited, it only takes my account back to where it was (in credit) - less a $15 charge no doubt

I know some people go off and spend against the check and then they are liable for unauthorized overdraft charges etc which can be substantial.

In future I would only take a Money order which is cashable FIRST without recourse at the post office, or cash

Paying a personal check or a certified bank check or a post office money order into a bank account can see it bouncing very many weeks later, but cashing the MO at the Post Office is pretty much safe and without recourse so long as the drawer asks the counter clerk to special check it for its genuineness before paying the cash - (so that one cannot be accused of having forged the check oneself)

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Hugh R Thaar
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:58 am Reply with quoteBack to top

DoraTheExplorer wrote:
Hugh, I know you went to your bank once. That's why I said you need to go back. Wink

Maybe I am not understanding it all and there is something I am missing. But it sounds to me like you are really hoping this isn't a scam when every piece of evidence is showing it is a scam.


Dora why do you want me to go back to my bank ? I have already sat down with them and shown them a photo copy of the check and asked them to make lots of phone calls because I am suspicious ?

Why do you want me to go to my bank again ? You can't get a pith helmet for sending me you know..(joke)

thanks

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Last edited by Hugh R Thaar on Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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Morgain Le Fay
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:59 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^ You are aware I am sure that money orders can be stolen? Not sure where you live but often times we have had stories about stolen money orders which have been stolen from the issuing postal outlet.

I recently sold 2 boats on Craig's List -- I only took cash and then checked it to make sure it was not counterfeit.

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Hugh R Thaar
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:01 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ That's why I suggest taking the MO to the Post Office, asking them to make sure its genuine and not stolen, then have them pay cash without recourse before I release the goods. Am I missing something ?

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:23 am Reply with quoteBack to top

hugh wrote:
he told me about his hobby of gold prospecting and how he planned to use a detector at my local gold mine when he came for the boat.


Hi Hugh, and welcome to Eater!

Hugh, that is NOT how a gold prospector would look for gold. Honestly, I agree with Dora, this is a scam. It sounds to me that real people have had their identities stolen. You have a truck full 'o red flags, so why continue?

Your persistence is admirable, but there are too many traps that you could fall into. I would break all contact. You cannot put the responsibility on your bank or the post office to confirm if everything is legit and then complain to them later. You already have a feeling that it's not legit, and that should be enough.

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Hugh R Thaar
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 1:37 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^
Totally agree. The check is in the bank and I covered myself from fraud accusations by going to my bank and alerting them. As it stands at the moment, my 'customer' is going to contact me end November / early December to collect the boat.
If that happens then fine because the check will have been cleared many months previously - but we know there is a big (huge) (almost total) chance this is a scam in which case the following will happen
A : The scammer loses interest and I never hear from him again and the check will bounce in the next 2 weeks.

B The scammer contacts me in the next few days and asks for a partial refund (say 80%) as he is now abroad for a year or two and needs a western Union to wherever.

I think it will be B:

I wont contact him and when he contacts me, I have the choice of ignoring him as you say, or fooling him around.

As he has my address (as Craigslist people need that to see the goods), this isn't a good candidate to fool around with - so I won't - I will contact the authorities with all the info I have as soon as the check bounces.

However, on the next occasion, when the next one approaches me (one that doesn't have my address) I will have him call me a horned black goat and put a spell on me before he gets to move on

Its a great plan

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Dorothy
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Location: somewhere over the rainbow


PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2011 2:56 am Reply with quoteBack to top

In answer to the question "Do scammers use their real information and just brazen it out?" the answer is almost ALWAYS no for this type of scam. Don't get me wrong--there are really stupid people out there who attempt to steal money using their real life information (look up how many bank robbers were stupid enough to write demands on the back of their own checks/deposit slips!) This particular scenario, though, is typical African scammer and the scam is nowhere near the norm for your typical idiotic American thief. But, as Dora already said, African scammers will not hesitate to use the complete details of an innocent person in another country, either former victim or public figure.

There are plenty of scammers in EVERY state. But they are often running different kinds of scams that are not baitable.

Please post the messages received from this person (minus any specific details about you, the person, or the boat) and we can most likely identify from the language if it is a typical African scam. If you have an email address for this person, please PM it to me. I can see if I can get a location.

And just to make it clear: These scams CAN and do happen with money orders. Not only do scammers steal/copy them, but they also alter them--a smaller money order is altered to look like it is for a larger sum of money. The post office may not detect it initially, especially if it is a real money order that has been altered. Your average worker at the counter is not necessarily educated in depth about fraud detection. You can be held responsible. In fact Craiglist themselves warn you that cashier's checks and money orders are not safe: http://www.craigslist.org/about/scams

It's nice that you alerted the bank, but it does NOT absolve you of responsibility. Most banks will be nice about it when you alert them if it hasn't happened before. They do not have to let you off the hook. They still have every right to charge you fines/fees and even press charges, because in this country, people are responsible for knowing where any money they deposit is coming from. Like it or not, you accepted liability the moment you made the decision to deposit money in your account without knowing the source.

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