SOLON, Ohio – It has not been a great holiday season for a 40 year old Solon man.
He was hoping to buy a 2011 Ford Explorer on Ebay for the upcoming winter, but instead found himself the victim of a wire transfer scheme that cost him $27,000.
Solon Police Lt. Bruce Felton reports the victim found the SUV on Ebay Motors and made contact with the seller who claimed he was located in Michigan.
According to Felton, the seller made up a series of excuses asking the victim to deviate from Ebay selling procedures.
The so-called seller then told the victim to wire transfer $27,000 to a location in Maryland, but delivery on the Ford Explorer never happened.
The victim filed a police report on Dec. 2, and contacted Ebay customer service days after the bogus transaction. Solon police, Ebay security, the FBI and the Department of Justice are now investigating, but it’s not clear if the victim will ever get his money back.
“It should always be a red flag if a seller asks you to wire transfer money for an Ebay purchase,” said Lt. Felton. “Consumers must follow Ebay guidelines to protect themselves from this type of fraud.”
Consumers should also be skeptical if a seller claims the item is in one location, but instructs you to send payment to a second location.
Ebay buyers should verify the sellers location, Ebay rating and if possible see the vehicle in person. Give the vehicle a test drive and have a mechanic you trust give it a complete check-up before issuing any money.