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Scammed On eBay

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DAVENPORT, IA – Looking back, he could have seen all the signs, but now Johan Muller is down 32,000 dollars after falling for a car post on eBay.

It’s a website that we’re all familiar with – ebay.com. You type in what you want, then simply bid and buy. Most of us don’t have problems with the site, but that’s the problem. We’ve grown to trust it so much that it’s easy to overlook the major signs of fraud.

Muller says, “That seemed like a good price so I offered them the amount. Later on, this person came online and said he accepted the bid.”

This scammer fits the traits of a typical fraud. He told Muller that he was going through a divorce and had to sell his car, that he was originally from the United States, but moved to England for work.

Bill Brauch Director of the Consumer Protection Division at the Iowa Attorney General’s Office says, “They always have a good story and a good excuse. It looks believable, but it’s a complete and utter con.”

After three months of emailing back and forth, Muller wired the money to the fake seller’s bank account in London, England through his family credit union in Davenport, Iowa.

That was the last Muller heard from a man who called himself “James Peterson”. And of course, the car was never delivered as promised.

Brauch recommends two things. First, if you are purchasing a car on eBay, make sure you see it in person and take it for a test drive. Second, if someone asks to wire money, it is more than likely a scam.

Brauch also says it’s almost impossible for victims to get their money back. Once a wire transaction goes through, it works like cash.

Muller tells KWQC that he isn’t done trying. He wants this con artist behind bars. He says, “I don’t think I’ll get my money back. If I do, I’ll be surprised, but the thing is I’m not the only one that he probably got. He has probably gotten other people and he got away with it.”

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