Hudson Craig's List seller discovered scam - WFLA News Channel 8

Hudson Craig's List seller discovered scam

Posted: Updated:
HUDSON, FL -

When Wally Pember needed to sell a generator, he turned to Craig's List, and a buyer quickly responded to accept his $450 offer.

But when payment arrived in the mail, there were two Money Grams, and each one was for $975. A strange text message followed. The buyer said his secretary had mistakenly sent Pember too much money and asked that he deposit both checks, keep an extra $30 for this trouble, and send the balance back via Western Union.

"It's not only buyer beware. It's seller beware," Pember said.

Pember was suspicious, and took the checks to Money Gram to find out if they were real or not. The news was not good.

"The water marks are not correct," Pember said. "They're just ink, and they determined through the routing that they're counterfeit."

Dug Smith, a U.S. Postal Inspector who investigates mail fraud, said variations of this scam are common.

"They're exchanging a document for true cash," Smith said.

The idea is, Smith says, for the victim to deposit the fake money orders, then send real money to the scammer. By the time the bank realizes the money orders are worthless, it's too late. The victim is left owing the back the full amount of the fake money orders.

Pember's Money Grams looked authentic, but he learned there were warning signs. Pember said he was told the routing numbers on his money grams were too bold and the water mark is just printed.

Here are some tips to avoid turning your cash over to a crook.

When a check comes in for too much, it's likely a scam. Verify the money order is real with the company that issued it, and never send cash back to someone you don't know.

  • NewsMore>>

  • Girl, 9, hit by plane on Venice beach dies from injuries

    Girl, 9, hit by plane on Venice beach dies from injuries

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:49 AM EDT2014-07-29 14:49:39 GMT
    Ommy Irizarry with daughter Oceana - Courtesy InstagramOmmy Irizarry with daughter Oceana - Courtesy Instagram
    9-year-old Oceana Irizzary, who was critically injured in the plane crash off Caspersen Beach in Venice on Sunday afternoon, has died.
    9-year-old Oceana Irizzary, who was critically injured in the plane crash off Caspersen Beach in Venice on Sunday afternoon, has died.
  • Florida's Back to School Sales Tax Holiday is Aug. 1-3, 2014

    Florida's Back to School Sales Tax Holiday is Aug. 1-3, 2014

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:46 AM EDT2014-07-29 14:46:28 GMT
    WFLA.com file photoWFLA.com file photo
    Are you ready for the new school year? Florida's annual Back to School Sales Tax Holiday can save you plenty of money. The sale starts at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 1 and ends at midnight on Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014. Here's everything you need to know.
    Are you ready for the new school year? Florida's annual Back to School Sales Tax Holiday can save you plenty of money. The sale starts at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 1 and ends at midnight on Sunday, Aug. 3, 2014. Here's everything you need to know.
  • Sedan crashes with truck, semi on I-4, closes lanes in morning

    Sedan crashes with truck, semi on I-4, closes lanes in morning

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 10:11 AM EDT2014-07-29 14:11:31 GMT
    A driver lost control of the car changing lanes on Interstate 4 between a box truck and a semi tractor trailer, Florida Highway Patrol troopers said. Multiple lanes were closed on the interstate Tuesday morning after that crash.
    A driver lost control of the car changing lanes on Interstate 4 between a box truck and a semi tractor trailer, Florida Highway Patrol troopers said. Multiple lanes were closed on the interstate Tuesday morning after that crash.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.