Resident victim of Internet scam 04-08-04

PHONE: 961-2251
APRIL 8, 2004


Police are warning Big Island residents to be aware of a new Internet scheme, this one originating in Nigeria and more complex than most.

A Puna resident complained to police that he had advertised a boat and trailer for sale in an Internet classified ad.

The complainant said he got an e-mail from a man who identified himself as “Slim Gee” and said he had a buyer interested in purchasing the boat, sight unseen. “Slim Gee” said a third man in Nigeria, whom he identified as “Kelvin Ash,” would act as a go-between for the purchase.

Eventually, the Puna victim agreed to sell the boat for $2,800. “Slim Gee” said he would send the complainant a $7,000 check and told him to take his portion, $2,800, and route the remaining $4,200 to “Kelvin Ash” in Nigeria so he could fly to Hawaii and make arrangements to have the boat shipped back to the buyer.

The complainant later received a check for $7,000 via FedEx, took the check to the bank and was told here was a seven-day waiting period for clearance before the money could be deposited into his account.

The complainant said that six days later, his bank called him and told him that the check had cleared, so he withdrew $4,200 from his account and sent it via Western Union to “Kelvin Ash.”

About a week later, he found out that his account was short $6,000. The bank told him the original $7,000 check was counterfeit and that he was responsible for making up the money for the counterfeit check.

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