Is this a scam? Your thoughts, please


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Declaration Day
December 21, 2005, 12:19 PM
I need some feedback from you guys.

I sold a rifle on Auction Arms about two weeks ago. Communication with the buyer has been slow, but I never had any indication that anything was wrong.

We determined shipping costs, and he sent me a cashier's check, FFL copy, and a couple of photocopies of our back and forth emails (for whatever reason).

I thought the check looked suspicious, so when I took it to my bank this morning, I asked them to verify it. It was from a bank that neither I or they had heard of, but that alone doesn't mean it's fake, so they went about making phone calls.

Forty five minutes later, they came out and said the check WAS fake. They kept it, and are submitting it to their fraud department. They gave me a photocopy of it.

Though I have never been a victim of fraud before, I am aware of the scams that occur on auction sites (mostly ebay), and so I will not ship the rifle until I have cash in hand.

The problem is, when I look up this guy's feedback rating on Auction Arms, he has 18 positive and zero negative marks. I've also verified the existence of the gun shop he wants the rifle shipped to.

It just doesn't seem right that someone would leave that kind of a trail if they were pulling a scam.

So I just sent him an email, politely describing the problem, and giving him the benefit of the doubt.

I probably won't be hearing from him right away as he said he'd be out of town for the holidays.

I believe I am handling this properly, but has this happened to any of you guys, or anyone you know? Any other thoughts? TIA.

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boofus
December 21, 2005, 12:22 PM
Get the US Postal Service involved too. Mail fraud is a serious crime especially when it involves a firearm.

Declaration Day
December 21, 2005, 12:24 PM
Get the US Postal Service involved too. Mail fraud is a serious crime especially when it involves a firearm.

I am going to wait, and give this guy a chance to clear things up.

I still have the rifle, so at this point I have lost nothing other than my time.

psyopspec
December 21, 2005, 12:25 PM
I think you're taking the right course of action. So far you haven't been ripped off, and being rude with the guy won't get you anywhere. If he's a scammer, let the authorities do their jobs. If (unlikely) this is some sort of misunderstanding I'm sure he'll want to work things out.

Declaration Day
December 21, 2005, 12:28 PM
I think you're taking the right course of action. So far you haven't been ripped off, and being rude with the guy won't get you anywhere. If he's a scammer, let the authorities do their jobs. If (unlikely) this is some sort of misunderstanding I'm sure he'll want to work things out.


I am not rude to anybody unless they give me a specific and deliberate reason to be.

palerider1
December 21, 2005, 12:28 PM
you did the right thing, you can always call the bank that the check is written from to make sure funds are available too. i have bought and sold many things on ebay and thank god have never had a problem.
good luck,
paul gilson
palerider1

pcf
December 21, 2005, 12:29 PM
https://www.atfonline.gov/fflezcheck

You can check his FFL online as well. If that is fake, I'd report him to his local police agency and ATF.

I've received a stolen MO before, the buyer got it at a gas station that was printing on stolen checks. Fortunately it was all local. Your buyer, could be getting scammed as well.

Declaration Day
December 21, 2005, 12:30 PM
Thanks PCF I will check the FFL immediately.

Declaration Day
December 21, 2005, 12:32 PM
The FFL is valid.

rustymaggot
December 21, 2005, 12:55 PM
i dont sell on any gun auction sites, but i ebay alot. mostly motorcycle parts. anyway, i accept postal money orders only. that way i can cash em at the post office. easy and safe. ive never heard of a fake postal money order getting thru the cashing process.

if a buyer insists on a personal check or somthing i tell the buyer there will be a 30 buisness day hold on the item while funds clear. its insane, but scammers are everywhere. i hate to do that to honest people but most understand cause they know how bad scams are on ebay these days.

1 old 0311
December 21, 2005, 01:32 PM
I ALWAYS ask for Postal Money Orders. If they can't comply I wait 2 weeks for the check to clear.

Kevin

georgeduz
December 21, 2005, 01:41 PM
postal money order can be faked an it takes about 4 weeks or so to find out they are bad,u must wait until it clears both banks.better yet use patpal.and the ffl might be good but it might not belong to the person scaming.

pcf
December 21, 2005, 01:45 PM
You can check money orders here http://www.usps.com/missingmoneyorders/security.htm On the left hand side are two links for missing and stolen MO's.

Gunpacker
December 21, 2005, 01:50 PM
Well, if he doesn't clear it up and can be found by authorities, it is unlikely that he will do it again.

poppy
December 21, 2005, 02:53 PM
Regardless of whether you hear from the buyer again, the receiving FFL needs to know about this bad check. poppy

f4t9r
December 21, 2005, 03:04 PM
You are doing the right thing

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