The main reason why I registered and am posting my story was because I don't want other, honest, people to go through what I had gone through the last couple of nights and today after being scammed online through craigslist.
Basically I was selling my furniture online via Craigslist for $275 and was contacted by a scammer via email. The scammer told me they were interested in buying the furniture but that they were not able to see it and would send money to me. They told me that no matter what, I should consider the furniture as 'sold' and that the money they sent should come within a week's time. They also said the money they were sending me was in excess of the amount I was purchase price and that the remaining money should be sent through Western Union to their mover location who would contact me with the date and time in which they would pick-up my furniture. So they sent me two money orders valued at $965 each (totaling $1930) and told me deposit the money and wire it 'asap'!
I went to the bank (Chase, to be specific) and deposited the money. It cleared the next day and I was like 'Ok, since the money cleared through and is now in my present and available balance, I guess I wasn't being scammed after all'. After I thought this to myself, I went to a local Western Union to have the money wired to the address the scammer sent to me, but didn't wire the money then because the service fee was a lot more than the scammer told me to use from their money. So I went back home and emailed the scammer telling them the service fee amount, to which they responded "that's fine, just have this done asap". I then responded by saying that all the WU's in my area were closed and that I was going to wire the money tomorrow. For some reason (and this seemed off to me, more than anything else), the scammer was like I'll look up all the WU's that are still open or open later because you must wire the money now. They then sent me an email with all open WU's near me, which I ignored because I made up my mind about sending the money later the next day. And that's when I got scammed, because I basically sent the remaining amount of money to the location the scammer indicated and paid the service fee from my own money, after finding out yesterday that both the money orders were fraudulent. So basically now I'm out $1655. However, I'm thanking God that unlike many people that I've been reading about on this site, that I wasn't in a worse situation. I mean it is $1655, which is large sum of money, but it could have been worse, a lot worse, and I'm just glad that the bank didn't make any charges against me because they didn't have to pay for it, as all the money that I was scammed into giving to this person, was all my own money, saved within my checking account.
I'm just sad that I basically gave away so much of my own money without realizing it beforehand when I could have done more research (and this was the one time, unfortunately, that I didn't
) and trusted my gut instincts, which would have saved me all this trouble. I mean I've never had $1000 before let alone $1655 all at once, which was all refund money from my college tuition, and it's just sad that it's all been blown out of the water because of some B******(s). I feel dumb and naive and just utterly stupid for having something happen to me that I thought would never happen to me in a million years
And the worse part is that the entire time I felt like things were not right and yet I still went ahead with the transaction because of my naivety and the fact that I trust and believe people so easily. The scammer wouldn't respond to my questions directly and would only contact me when the transaction itself was being discussed. The emails sent to me were filled with spelling mistakes and things seemed shady. Also, on the bottom of some notes their was like an automatic message that seemed as if they always did this. The address they emailed me to wire the remainder of the money to also seemed fishy because I Googled it and it seemed to be just grassland everywhere. But STILL I didn't get a clue; it's because I was naive and trust people very easily and thought that this person was probably an honest person who was trusting me with their money and wanted to make sure everything was probably handled and that I wasn't scamming them (I know this was another flag--why would someone give me their own money?--but I realized it only now unfortunately).
Anyways, the people that defrauded me used one specific email address to get and stay into contact with me until all transactions went through. That email was firstname.lastname@example.org
. Beware of this email if you ever contacted by it when selling on craigslist. The header or name on the email was Kati Dull and the person and their address that the scammer requested me to send the remaining money to was Patricia Mankowski at 170 Tunnel Rd. Leeds, Alabama 35094. The money orders were sent to me via USPS express mail from a Sarah Aycock 701 S Puerco Dr. Gallup, NM 87301, and the name and address on both of the money orders was Cheryl Labeat 529 Hilltop Drive Hatelunson MN, 55350. I know that it was stupid of me to trust and send someone money who was getting a hold of me with so many different names and addresses, but again I was very naive and this was the first time I had ever used craigslist and just didn't really know things like this could happen and were actively happening on the website.
After I saw that the money orders were fictitious on my bank account online I called Western Union the next morning, who could only file a report and do nothing more. I called up Chase and they said they couldn't do anything since I debited the money from my own account. Thereafter, I called and filed a report with my local police department and also filed a report on IC3.
I just wanted to warn everyone of the crooks that scammed me so that they could be cautious when doing a transaction online though craigslist and so that if they ever do a google the names and email address, they can be directed here.
However, I also wanted to know if there is anything else I should or could do to possibly get some
compensation back for what I've lost? Or is there anyone else I should report this too? If so could you guys let me know?
Also, I was wondering since I didn't sell my furniture what should I do now? Meaning, should I post it up again on Craigslist? If so, is it okay if I respond back to this post with the emails sent to me, to determine whether or not they are scam or not so that I'm not stuck in this situation again?
Please help, thanks.