Scam 12-14-06

PHONE: 961-2252
DECEMBER 14, 2006


Big >Island> police are warning residents of another recently discovered scam. Most people are familiar with scams offering large sums of unclaimed money or lottery winnings available for a processing fee or the like, but advance fee fraudsters have come up with a new tool to trick people out of their money.

Scammers operating out of >Amsterdam> and Rotterdam have created copies of the Websites of express transportation companies to lure victims into paying transportation and advance fees for used motorcycles and cars that are never delivered.

In the recent cases seen, the scammers offer a used Suzuki Katana GSX-600 or a BMW Z3 roadster at several used vehicle sales Websites for next to nothing. After the buyers respond, they are usually told that the vehicles are currently in Spain or another European county and that they (the buyer) will have to pay transportation costs. The false seller then recommends the use of online escrow services with Websites that appear legitimate. Some of these fake Websites even warn you about internet fraud or include a link to the Internet> >Fraud> >Complaint> >Center.

Individuals should be very careful when making large ticket purchases over the internet. You should be aware that once your money leaves the United States, police are unable to track its destination and prosecute the offenders. In the past, federal law enforcement agencies, such as the U.S. Secret Service, have concluded that they, too, cannot prosecute these cases, since they extend beyond U.S. borders.

Although the Hawaii Police Department is unaware of anyone on the Big> >Island affected by this new scam, police believe it is just a matter of time before someone is tempted. They urge the public to please be aware.

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