Thursday, October 12, 2006

Mayers Cartes and Door2Door

Hubby learned something new today. Can you say escrow-fraud?
Looking for a car to purchase, he begins e-mailing a guy in Antwerp (see blog title) selling his BMW on Autoscout , an online car catalogue. The guy accepts Hubby's bid for the car, which in hindsight was way under market value. He refers him to a transport company (see blog title) that can guarantee the transaction. (The seller brings the car to the shipping company, they in turn bring the car to the buyer for an account, 30% of the selling price. The buyer has 5 days to inspect the car, at which time, if he accepts the car, pays the remainder of the price. If the deal is rejected, the shipping company returns the car to the seller. Everybody's money is refunded.) After a couple of e-mails, the seller stops corresponding. No news of an impending shipment. Three days later , he starts up again, saying he was away because of a sick brother in far off Sweden. Alright! Let the shipping begin...Needless to say the escrow company was as bogus as the car Mayers Cartes was selling. A few elements tipped us off to the (lack of) credibility of the whole operation. The most eloquent in no particular order:
  1. the shipping company's original web site was shut down. (I later found out that site was shut down by an anti-fraud agency. Its demise coincided with the moment the seller stopped corresponding. Sweden, my ass!). We were transferred by the seller to a new web site for the same company. Duh!
  2. the shipping company would only accept Western Union cash transfers
  3. the shipping company's correspondance was filled with basic grammar mistakes (similar to those found in e-mails from a Nigerian heiress promising millions if...)
Please note, that Hubby was not stupid enough to volunteer any financial information or transfer any money. No money was lost, just time and rose-coloured glasses.

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