Skip to comments.New Twist on the Nigerian Scam?
Posted on 05/07/2012 6:30:02 AM PDT by cuban leaf
I answered an ad in the Kentucky website used by my town for free classifieds. It listed my town in central KY as the location. The ad was for the truck described below for $3,000. But look at the response I got back below. Is it a twist on the Nigerian scam.
Your thoughts? (some information redacted)
This is XXXXX. I received your email about my 1999 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71 4X4. The truck is in great shape. It was always garaged and never smoked in. It has minor scratches, normal for the age. No mechanical or electrical problems. It has been extremely well maintained with a full service history. Clean title in hand, with no loans or liens on it. It does not need anything additional to function, has 144,000 miles. It has automatic transmission, 5.3L V8 engine, 4X4, bedliner, trailer package, LS package, power windows, power door locks, brand new bridgestone dueler A/T tires and more. It just completed a full inspection and is good to go. The price for the truck is $2,800.
For more pictures here is a link to the truck's photo gallery: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
I am currently stationed at Fort xxxxx (U.S. Military training base in CA) making final preparations before deploying to Afghanistan. The truck is here with me at the base but don't worry as the shipping won't be a problem; military has a considerable discount, so I can handle it by myself with no charges whatsoever on your account. Shipping may take anywhere between 2 to 3 business days depending on the destination. All documents you need for ownership, manuals and bill of sale will be provided along with the truck. For the payment I would like to use Google Checkout as a third party. They will keep your money into a protection account until you get the truck and will release it to me after inspection period is over and you agree to keep the truck. So, this is not a blind transaction, you can see the truck before committing to buy and to eliminate any concerns you will have 5 days to inspect the truck. If you decide not to keep it Google Checkout will refund you the money, no questions asked, and shipping back will be my concern. I think this is more than fair for both of us. I'll start the official procedure, and Google Checkout will contact you about this. If you are interested in buying it just mail me back with: - Your Full Name and Address - Required by Google Checkout (You'll receive important guidelines + instructions from them.). I want to point out that because I am going to Afghanistan this sale is my top priority and I am looking after a fast transaction, with no delays. That is why I decided to lower the price, to avoid wasting time with negotiations and find a buyer as soon as possible.
Thanks, Sgt. XXXX XXXXXX
Anyone think it's legit? Anyone think it's not?
BTW, the photo gallery is at flickr and uses the person's name on the email as it's name.
get a phone number and call
Have you ever used Google checkout? If they will, indeed hold the money until you authorize a release then it may be legitimate.
Simple rule: If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Run or you will ose your money. It is absolutely a scam....red
If the truck is in your town, tell the guy you’d like to drop by and see it.....
This thread http://forums.beyond.ca/showthread/t-353086.html looks extremely similar to what you're looking at - a divorce related sale of a car with shipping from a distant place and promises of an inspection period and Google Wallet holding onto the money. Only one of the links listed went to a scam site (which has since been closed down.)
My thoughts: Please remit $7,500 processing and handling service fee to my Solicitor and I will tell you what they are.
Thank you. The two things that popped out at me right away were that he used generic language regarding where it would be shipped to (he should have known my town) and at that price he might as well sell it to a used car lot locally and be done with it.
I’ve been waiting for these scams to get better with their english.
Interestingly, his Gmail account is a normal person’s name, as is the name on the Flickr account. It really “looks” legit except for the odd terms. And getting information about Google wallet regarding holding money, etc. is very difficult. I wouldn’t use it for anything at this point. It looks like it is almost set up as a portal for scams.
Great question posted on the link BC provided:
If the deal is so good, why not just sell the vehicle locally and save the shipping fees?
—If the truck is in your town, tell the guy youd like to drop by and see it.....—
Precisely. This is why I used Craigslist - face-to-face transactions. This is why I use this local equivalent (Craigslist is pretty useless out here).
This is the second time I’ve answered an ad in either place (once in Seattle using Craigslist and once here in central KY) that involved something listed that is not local. In both cases they were scams. Hence the “face to face only” thing.
Thanks. There is one in there that is actually very similar to the one I got. Interesting that this was posted in a local town’s free classified’s site.
Actually, doing some more investigation, this scam is the same scam that has been running forever... Just with a new title.
You get a checkout message with a request to WESTERN UNION the funds to the authorized Google account specialist. That’s the whole deal - yet another Western Union scam to steal money. Your funds go to someone somewhere in the world, with zero recourse to get those funds back, or even find out WHERE they went.
It might even draw it out a bit - ‘the shipping company has your car and I’ll reimburse you for this, but they need another $800..’ before they disappear.
It is a scam.
Sorry to burst your bubble but a truck like that will sell locally and not have to be shipped hundreds of miles away.
We saw one like that in Charlotte craigslist- a mother was selling her son’s Harley because he had been killed in combat and she couldn’t bear to see look at the bike everyday and be reminded of him being so happy. We knew it was a scam and emailed the person. We followed it through to the end when I emailed that my brother wanted to see it and, WOW, coincidentally was in the same city that the seller was!!! And he was a mechanic but his roommate was with the FBI and they could both be there shortly. They never responded. Also, we flagged the ad and it kept popping back up.
Also, you can google the name of the seller- you might find, like we did, dozens of ads using that same name all across the country.
My husband had similar responses when he made inquiries on vehicles listed on Craig’s List, the person is leaving the country for work, etc, or car is not actually in our area, but will be shipped to the purchaser. He also received some strange scam like responses when he listed our mini van on Craig’s List. I would never respond to anything I thought was suspicious.
What raised the red flag for me on this one was the price vs the effort the guy was going to make to get it to me. Maybe I’m richer than some, but if my TOP priority before going to Afghanistan was to get rid of a vehicle, I wouldn’t sell it way below book to a guy in another state and then ship it to him at my “reduced” cost, with the risk that the guy doesn’t want it. I’d just take it to a “cash for cars” lot or sell it locally on Craigslist.
But the use of English was excellent, suggesting that this is good old American ingenuity in action rather than a bunch of Nigerians. But maybe they are just learning better English.
—Sorry to burst your bubble but a truck like that will sell locally and not have to be shipped hundreds of miles away.—
No bubble burst. I declined before I posted this, if only because of the hassle even if it was legit. ;-)
And in that sentence you also nailed the first red flag I saw in the email. :-)
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