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WARNING!! Attempted Scam!!!

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#26 maknewtnut

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Posted 17 January 2013 - 10:53 PM

Way to go Larry!

#27 Starman27

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:56 AM

Your well earned reputation is intact.

#28 Escher

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 12:00 PM

Glad to hear things are working out for you man... I hear you - its getting worse and worse. I've been selling on ebay for years and on forums as well and I read about more of these issues daily it seems.

#29 EFT

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 01:16 PM

Just this last 10 days or so lots of high end cameras and even a telescope or two listed in London UK (but check seller's other items and see that most other items are in the USA and $30 tops). All are buy it now for "ONLY 2600 USD" (like we americans call our currency USD...) and "don't contact me through ebay, "contact me at ukscammer@gmail.com"

Buyer... and Seller! beware!


I do a lot with musical instrument on the bay and those ones where the text is all graphics and they don't want you to bid but contact them directly instead are always scams (and of course against the bay rules). It just ticks me off that the bay can't take care of that problem. Often the same item shows up over and over just using a different account each time. It makes me wonder how many people they take in since some of these items are high dollar items. I jerked one of the scammers around for a while just to waste his time.

Most of the people here and on Amart are very good though and Amart in particular does a lot to weed out the scammers. But it is hard to catch them all.

#30 Joe Cepleur

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 03:23 PM

I have a scope at Larry's right now, and can't imagine anyone wanting to hassle him. His work is more a labor of love and a public service than a business (although I hope it's successful as a business), based on his love of telescopes and his personal crusade to preserve vintage C8s and other classic scopes.

I have a confession to make. When I was balking and wondering how I would ever fix my salt-encrusted C8, several of the members here on Cloudy Nights recommended I ship it to Larry for refurbishing. At the time, I had never heard of Larry. Still, those referrals would have enough for me (I remember one was from Tim53), partly because I believed the folks here to be sincere, but also partly because I had nothing to lose except the postage. Moreover, since I was going to document the entire process here on Cloudy Nights Classics Forum, I figured if anything went way wrong, it would hurt the scammer more than me. Nothing personal, Larry. I didn't know you at the time, so I was just thinking protectively, as you did before you knew A.R. Great minds think alike. It's okay to be protective while getting to know people. Your not getting ripped off by A.R. amply proves this point.

At this stage, I don't have the scope back yet because Larry hasn't finished it, but his integrity has become perfectly clear to me as we have become email and telephone friends throughout the refurbishing. Not that anyone should be subject to a scam, but really -- Larry?! What low life could do this to Larry?

Anyway, thanks, Larry, for tipping us off. Are you at liberty to tell us through what mysterious auction site this happened, or is that immaterial, so better not to mention them by name?

I feel strongly in the importance of being able to buy online. Not just the folks in deepest Canada or furthest Scotland live far from telescope shops. Most of us do. Online reputations matter.

#31 Taylor

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 05:39 PM


Most of the people here and on Amart are very good though and Amart in particular does a lot to weed out the scammers. But it is hard to catch them all.


That is one reason why I like Astromart, the frequency of scammers there seems to be pretty low. I've only had about 50-60 transactions there over the past decade but I've never come across a scammer.

I've found sites that require a fee to join have fewer scammers than free sites. That is probably one reason for the lack of scammers there. Why pay $15 in a small, niche community if it won't pay off?

#32 Geo.

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:21 PM

Seeing that shipping wise I appear to be on the far side of the moon, I can only hope this does not sour everyone into not shipping.


Just sent a C9.25 off to Moldovia! It had to go surface as there's a 2 meter length + girth limit. At least once I got it to Elisabeth, NJ, my risks are somewhat limited.

A lot more things are lost to bad packing and handling than criminals. I say criminal because insurance fraud is specifically classified as a crime in all states. But conservative estimates place property and casualty payouts on fraudulent claims at more than $30 billion annually. If the fraud involves the use of the internet, then we can make a federal case out it, wire fraud.

eBay has instituted a Global shipping service. What's involved isn't exactly clear, other than more revenue for eBay. I assume that they have lined up international surface shippers to bundle eBay goods in containers. The good is if you sell internationally your only obligation is to get the goods to the port. For the overseas buyer there should be some savings in the shipping costs.

Paypal's 3% fee is pretty much in line with most merchant card account fees. The credit card companies operate in the same way in the face of buyer complaints. As a seller you have to be prepared for claims if you are going prevail on a claim. Serial numbers and other means of identifying an object are essential.

#33 FeynmanFan

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:19 PM

You shipped it USPS, and he tried to do a UPS claim? That's beyond bizarre.

#34 orion61

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 10:29 AM

You shipped it USPS, and he tried to do a UPS claim? That's beyond bizarre.

No Im sorry my KBD is bad and I have a couple sticky keys
I have to push the S hard and forget about it sometime..
I'd switch it out if it wasn't a laptop he tried a usps claim..Sorry for the confusion

#35 Geo.

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 01:29 PM

Call the Postal Inspectors if you want the guy to have a bad day. When I was with the NYS AG's Consumer Frauds division referrals to the PI were always pursued seriously.

Attemping to defraud the US Postal Service is covered under the federal False Claims Act, and a felony. Just ask Lance Armstrong. This also means that whistleblowers who expose fraudulent claims to the Postal Service may bring a "Qui Tam lawsuit" on the governments behalf recover money lost in postal service fraud schemes and can recover 15% to 30% of the government’s recovery. Doubt you'll find an attorney to take on a case here, given the amount involved, but it's not nice to screw with the USPS.

#36 orion61

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 05:15 PM

Why hire an attorney when I have you?
I am going to talk to My Post Master next week.
Let him have a couple bad nights!

#37 Julio

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 07:07 PM

Interesting George, thanks for the information.

#38 bogg

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:08 AM

Sorry to hear about your trouble. It seems some people just want everything for nothing. Glad you were so savy to take all of the pecautions. Nothing like instinct.






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