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scams on tandem club classified

Old 04-21-15, 08:48 AM
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mikeybikey2
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scams on tandem club classified

Hey all,

Just got took for $2800 on a scam on a tandem club classified ad for a co-motion copilot out of New Iberia, Louisiana. It looked legit,but after I wired the money he said he made a mistake and wanted $3750 total. When I said no, he said I would have to wait until he sold the bike to get my money back. Sadly, I think I will never see that money again. BEWARE!
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Old 04-21-15, 11:58 AM
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Which web site was the ad on? I was almost scammed selling a tandem, the buyer sent me a bogus check for $10,000 wanted me to cash it, keep $2,000 and send him the remaining $8,000 and he would send somebody to pick up the bike. Luckily my wife was smarter than me and stopped me from going ahead. Seems like tandem classifieds ads are targets for scams. Hope you get your money back, I would report it to the police or appropriate agency.
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Old 04-21-15, 08:38 PM
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I don't want to say that PayPal is a cure-all, but I do think they offer a significant amount of protection - well worth the 2.9% they charge.

Last edited by mwandaw; 04-27-15 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 04-21-15, 10:49 PM
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Years ago had a scam offer on a tandem we had for sale.
Never buy a pig (or tandem) in a poke.
It is a hard lesson to learn; so beware and thanks for your posting.
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Old 04-22-15, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by mikeybikey2 View Post
Hey all, Just got took for $2800 on a scam on a tandem club classified ad for a co-motion copilot out of New Iberia, Louisiana. It looked legit,but after I wired the money he said he made a mistake and wanted $3750 total. When I said no, he said I would have to wait until he sold the bike to get my money back. Sadly, I think I will never see that money again. BEWARE!
Really sorry to hear of your possible financial loss on a scam. Tandems do seem to be a draw for scammers and I'll be darned if I know why: perhaps we have a reputation for being just a bit too trusting.

Just curious, did you speak with the seller on the phone to establish some rapport and get a gut check before doing a deal, or was it all via Email?

If you did a wire transfer from your bank account and now believe this may have been a scammer, you might want to make sure your bank is aware and see what else their fraud unit might recommend.
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Old 04-22-15, 02:47 PM
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Originally Posted by TandemGeek View Post
Really sorry to hear of your possible financial loss on a scam. Tandems do seem to be a draw for scammers and I'll be darned if I know why: perhaps we have a reputation for being just a bit too trusting.

Just curious, did you speak with the seller on the phone to establish some rapport and get a gut check before doing a deal, or was it all via Email?

If you did a wire transfer from your bank account and now believe this may have been a scammer, you might want to make sure your bank is aware and see what else their fraud unit might recommend.
Unfortunately we corresponded in just emails. Looking back there were a lot of things I should have checked on. He did seem like he knew what he was talking about. When I suggested paypal, he agreed if I would pay the fees.(mistake #1 ) When I asked for more information, he was forth coming with more pictures. He even had a picture of the serial number. what I think these crooks are doing is combing the internet for old tandem ads. They copy the pictures and description and post their own ad. I think this pretty much the case on an ad in tandem classified that I shied away from. Picture was identical to tandem sold on ebay the year before. Saw the same ad and picture on recumbent and tandem classified under a different name and state. With all the tech information about tandems on the net, it's probably pretty to get answers to any questions.
Contacted the bank. Said they would try to get the money back, but I'm not holding my breath. Bought and sold more than a few bikes on line and never had a problem. I guess I just got too lax.
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Old 04-22-15, 03:39 PM
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How do you ship a tandem?

Anyway, I can imagine trying to run a scam on something that would be desirable enough to get people to ship across the country, and expensive enough to make it worth it.

In this case, $2800 may well be a felony.
You have their bank account number, which may include their entire personal info (name, birthplace, SS#, address, etc).

Prosecuting something across the country may be a problem (hopefully they are in the USA), but shouldn't be impossible.

I'd go to your bank, and have them verify as much information about the owner of the account and their bank. Then talk to that bank.

Then talk to the guy with the bike and tell him that you're either expecting the bike or an immediate refund, and that you've contacted the police as well as considering legal action.

It may well cost you $1000 to get your $2800 back, but it still may be worth it, and with a lawsuit, the looser technically has to also pay fees and expenses (which you should point out to the thief).
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Old 04-23-15, 11:18 PM
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Recently, I also came across a tandem for sale on the Tandem Club Classifieds that I am almost positive was a scam. This was a red '08 Supremo with S&S couplers, supposedly housed in El Campo, TX. The bike looked to be in great shape and was listed at $4K, including cases. This seemed to be a pretty good price (maybe too good) so I thought I would check on it since we have friends looking for a nice tandem.

I emailed the seller who provided additional pictures and told a story of buying it from a guy in CO. I asked about how they would handle the purchase end and that's when things got interesting. Here was the response:

"I have sold a few items before and usually get paid through Bank transfer (preferable) or certified check. I tried PayPal once and it was hell. The guy was a crook and demanded a refund via Credit card after receiving item. I'm not willing to go that route."

At that point things seemed pretty fishy. Searched the contact name used by the seller and found it was tied with a scam selling radio equipment, also out of El Campo, TX. Coincidence? Maybe. Googled images of the Supremo and low and behold found the exact same pictures of the tandem (about 10 of them) on an original ebay listing (still viewable), sold in CO about a year earlier.

The problem with these things is that there is no proof that these are scams until someone actually gets scammed. Scammer is likely not even in the US.

Very disturbing. I hope the OP somehow recovers his funds.
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Old 04-24-15, 07:02 AM
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I also, had checked out that bike and found it pretty fishy. I had asked him to send me his picture and a picture of his driver's license. Never heard back from him.
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Old 04-24-15, 11:40 AM
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Rule #1 of used tandem sales: If the asking price for a tandem seems a bit too reasonable for the age, features, or condition be suspicious.

Always get the seller on the phone and find out where they bought the bike or had it last serviced and for the name/phone number of a local bike shop where someone could look it over for you and possibly arrange shipping, etc. If they waffle and can't provide names/numbers that actually pan-out, move on.

Same thing works in reverse. If someone offers to pay you full price for a tandem without asking a bunch of really good questions, by all means, don't ship the tandem until the funds are in the hands of a escrow firm or your bank account... preferably via a check that clears or PayPal.
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Old 04-24-15, 11:51 AM
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Bummer dude. Hope you get your money back.
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Old 04-25-15, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by jnbrown View Post
Which web site was the ad on? I was almost scammed selling a tandem, the buyer sent me a bogus check for $10,000 wanted me to cash it, keep $2,000 and send him the remaining $8,000 and he would send somebody to pick up the bike. Luckily my wife was smarter than me and stopped me from going ahead. Seems like tandem classifieds ads are targets for scams. Hope you get your money back, I would report it to the police or appropriate agency.
Everyone selling anything on the internet can expect to receive a few replies from scammers indicating that the "Buyer" is on board a ship, or serving somewhere, or otherwise unable to view the item, but knows it well and is willing to over-pay for it via certified cheque or money order and have you send the difference via a Western Union to a "shipper" or agent who would pick the item up....

The certified cheques (probably made on a Macintosh) look good enough to pass inspection at a bank (but would surely come back as NSF a month later).

I have one here somewhere for US $11,000 that I received a few years ago: a thing of beauty, but not worth a dime. I was supposed to deposit the cheque in my bank and then send $1,000 to an agent in an African country whose name starts with "N", but I never did take it to a bank.

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Old 04-25-15, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Binky View Post
Everyone selling anything on the internet can expect to receive a few replies from scammers indicating that the "Buyer" is on board a ship, or serving somewhere, or otherwise unable to view the item, but knows it well and is willing to over-pay for it via certified cheque or money order and have you send the difference via a Western Union to a "shipper" or agent who would pick the item up....

The certified cheques (probably made on a Macintosh) look good enough to pass inspection at a bank (but would surely come back as NSF a month later).

I have one here somewhere for US $11,000 that I received a few years ago: a thing of beauty, but not worth a dime. I was supposed to deposit the cheque in my bank and then send $1,000 to an agent in an African country whose name starts with "N", but I never did take it to a bank.

Binky
Not bike-related, but I still have a couple of checks for 2-3 thousand each that came independently in the mail a few years ago from two 'companies' wanting me to be a secret shopper. All I had to do was was go shopping, buy stuff, report my shopping experience and then cash the checks, keep what I spent for purchases plus my labor and then wire them the remainder. (And then wait for their fake checks to bounce.) Very real looking checks. One was from North of the Border.
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Old 04-25-15, 11:17 PM
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I was sent one of those rubber checks from Nigeria once.

It said right on the check to check for micro-printing on the signature lines.
So, I got out a magnifying glass... and what do you know, no micro-printing.
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Old 04-26-15, 08:16 PM
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I did actually purchase our Davinci from a craiglist ad. I had them take it to a LBS for inspection and packing to make sure it was legit and luckily it was. I would have been really bummed if it was a scam.
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Old 04-28-15, 09:55 AM
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I have bought and sold several tandems (and even our triplet) remotely from ads on Craigslist, with good results. ALWAYS do due diligence, including a good Web search, talking with them on the phone more than once, and if possible doing a reverse phone/address lookup.
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Old 05-06-15, 10:17 AM
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I have started doing a google image search on anything I am interested on buying used online (thanks Catfish). I was looking at a local pickup truck on Craigslist but after the image search, I found that it was for sale on many local Craigslist sites across the country.

Search online for the email address that they used. Maybe you will find it on other classified sites and be able to reach out as a potential buyer for something else they are scamming and can track them down.
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Old 05-06-15, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Number400 View Post
I have started doing a google image search on anything I am interested on buying used online (thanks Catfish)...
I was curious about your description of Catfish. A quick search yielded their website, and it seems VERY interesting.

Thanks Number400!
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Old 05-06-15, 06:18 PM
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That is a pay site. You can do a free reverse image on Google. I was referring to the MTV show Catfish, where they do reverse image searches on people to make sure they are who they say they are

Originally Posted by mwandaw View Post
I was curious about your description of Catfish. A quick search yielded their website, and it seems VERY interesting.

Thanks Number400!
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Old 07-13-15, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by mikeybikey2 View Post
Hey all,

Just got took for $2800 on a scam on a tandem club classified ad for a co-motion copilot out of New Iberia, Louisiana. It looked legit,but after I wired the money he said he made a mistake and wanted $3750 total. When I said no, he said I would have to wait until he sold the bike to get my money back. Sadly, I think I will never see that money again. BEWARE!
Hey all, He's at it again. This is the same guy that scammed me with an ad in tandem club classified.

Tandem Club of America | Co-motion Coupled Tandem - New Iberia - Louisiana - United States - For Sale - For Sale - United States - Louisiana - New Iberia - Co-motion Coupled Tandem
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Old 07-13-15, 12:48 PM
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TCA Scams

I have my 2006 CoMotion Copilot listed on Tandem Club of America. I've had three totally different scams tried on me in the past 6 weeks. One wanker went so far as to send me fake PayPal emails showing that he had paid me. PayPal transactions are pretty safe, but BE SURE to check the actual address...like I said, they were sending me fake PayPal emails with the letterhead and everything. They were also asking for WU payments, which PayPal NEVER does. I started asking the guy for his bank routing and account numbers so I could wire transfer the money directly. Idiot fell for it. I turned everything over to PayPal fraud and some friends in suits.

So please be careful out there. And if you want a sweet tandem, drop me a line.
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Old 07-13-15, 01:17 PM
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I would ask for help catching him on the scam baiter forum. https://forum.419eater.com/forum/

Some of these folks have resources and lots and lots of time to bait scam artist scumbags.

At the very least there are some funny stories.

Originally Posted by mikeybikey2 View Post
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Old 11-08-15, 08:43 PM
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I emailed about that same ad because we lived 4.5 hours away. Guy gave me some story that he just moved. I knew it was a scam then. I flagged that ad then.

Found the same pics on another site and guy answered phone and said he had sold that tandem and had several calls about it being up for sale again using his pics.

Sorry
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