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Been robbed by seller - feel like an idiot!

(61 Posts)
SimplyRedHead Fri 18-Jan-13 14:21:34

Hi all,

This is my first post.

I have been using eBay regularly for years and am probably a bit too comfortable with it which has caused me to let my guard down.

Basically, I made an offer on a pram which was accepted. The seller asked for quick payment because she was 'going on holiday'. I couldn't transfer money into my PayPal account because I have just moved and changed my name and my PayPal details don't match my bank details.

I sent an email explaining this and asking to transfer the money via bank transfer. She gave me her bank details and asked for my email and text number so she could contact me if needs be.

I didn't think anything of it and transferred the cash we she acknowledged. We then had regular email conversations about delivery.

The pram hasn't turned up, the item number is showing as 'invalid' on eBay, she's stopped responding to my emails and I've noticed all her feedback is very recent and all from her buying, not selling.

I feel sick that she has £670 of my money, my address, my email and my mobile number. I have contacted eBay and opened a case but because I didn't pay via PayPal I'm not covered. I have contacted my bank but there is nothing they can do. I plan to contact the police.

I am just about to go on maternity leave and that was all the money I has saved up so I can't afford another pram.

Can anyone offer any help or suggestions please?

(I know I was an idiot and should have used PayPal or a credit card)



breatheslowly Sat 19-Jan-13 21:21:39

On the positive side, it was you who asked to do a bank transfer rather than paypal. If she had asked this then you would have no hope, but since it was you I think you have more of a chance of getting the pram.

fergoose Sat 19-Jan-13 21:28:17

a dispute cannot force a seller to refund a bank transfer though can it?

I agree, if the item number is invalid you can't open a dispute or leave feedback. Did the seller end the item early so it was unsold and you did an off ebay sale, or was the item removed as it was removed by ebay for being fraudulent/incorrect.

SimplyRedHead Sun 20-Jan-13 11:25:19


I have no idea what happened to the item listing - it's very odd.

I bid through eBay using the BIN or best offer option and she accepted my offer through eBay. She then messaged me through eBay and we had a brief discussion there before switching to email conversations.

The item is showing in my bought history with the amount in green but when I click on it I get a message saying 'item number invalid'. Luckily the messages I have had from her include her eBay name and item number so I have been able to raise a case.

It's very odd!

SavoyCabbage Sun 20-Jan-13 11:33:51

I don't think there's a need to totally panic just yet. Do you know how she was sending it? Through which company.

Is it marked as sent on the listing and if so when or did she say when she was sending it. It could be delayed or even lost and she doesn't know.

SimplyRedHead Sun 20-Jan-13 11:35:46

Ooooo and Fergoose thanks so much for the link to get her phone number from eBay.

I've sent a request and fingers crossed she'll answer her phone and this will all be a misunderstanding!

fergoose Sun 20-Jan-13 12:17:08

try googling her phone number - it may get you her address

have you been to the police yet?

SimplyRedHead Sun 20-Jan-13 13:22:45

Thanks again for all your help.

eBay sent me her number which goes straight to answer phone but if she's on holiday, that wouldn't be unusual.

I have also found her on Facebook and she has posted a recent holiday photo so I'm starting to calm down now.

There are still lots of things that don't add up but I now have so much information I'm confident I'll be able to do something!

Unfortunately, I can't open the listing to see if it's showing as sent.

Thanks again for all your advice, I really hope this is a storm in a teacup and she will email in a couple of days to say she's back from holiday and is sorting it all out.

*wildly optimistic but fingers crossed!

Flickstix Sun 20-Jan-13 18:28:58

I'm a powerseller on ebay and have been running the business for about 7 years so have a bit of experience with this kind of thing.

You need to go to the police. For that amount of money they will get involved, you can call them on 101.

Has her ebay account been closed down? This could be why the item isn't showing up.

If you speak to ebay they will likely advise you you do this, often all it takes is the threat of getting the police involved to prompt the seller into action,

Best of luck

Flickstix Sun 20-Jan-13 18:31:01

Sorry just noticed your most recent post, I would leave it a few days in that case!

It will show up on paypal as 'sent', not just ebay, have a look there.

SimplyRedHead Sun 20-Jan-13 18:50:51

Hi Flickstick

Thanks for the advice. I've checked her out via the website Fergoose suggested (can't remember the name of it) and it says her eBay account is closed but then eBay is showing it as open.

It's all very odd.

I'm very 50/50 about seeing my money or the pram again!

fergoose Sun 20-Jan-13 18:51:40

I would go to the police now too - I wouldn't wait a few days with that amount of money involved

It won't show up in paypal Flickstix, it was a bank transfer.

PoohBearsHole Tue 22-Jan-13 12:11:18

OP, where are you up to now? Any news? Have you been to the police? or heard from the ebayer?

SimplyRedHead Wed 23-Jan-13 22:27:09

Hi there,

I'm still waiting her hear back from her. The eBay case finishes this week and I plan to send a last and final email on that day threatening legal action if I don't get my money or the pram within 3 days.

I've managed to dig around and get quite a lot of information about her from various online sources which I will share with the police.

I've been so busy I decided to give her the benefit of the doubt and wait for a reply but I will start kicking butt this week!

Hell hath no fury like a pregnant woman scorned!

SimplyRedHead Fri 25-Jan-13 10:44:13

Hi again,

I've sent her an email saying that if I don't have my money, or the pram, by 5pm on Monday I will be contacting the police and starting legal proceedings.

I've had enough now!

Thanks again for all your advice.

SimplyRedHead Wed 30-Jan-13 18:05:07

Just incaase anyone still cares .........I have now reported the crime to the police who have basically said they'll use the information as a 'jigsaw piece' to help build up a picture of Internet crime but that they can't investigate it directly due to lack of staff!!

I'm now trying to get her address to start a small claims court case.

HousewifeFromHeaven Wed 30-Jan-13 18:11:52

Send the sherrifs!! I watch too much daytime tv.

Joking aside, good for you. Hope you get the result you want.

dobby2001 Wed 30-Jan-13 18:13:28

Hope it gets sorted Simply. Anychance she is still on holiday and genuinely has no idea?? (ever hopeful me...)

badgeroncaffeine Wed 30-Jan-13 18:22:41

Sorry to hear you've been scammed. Bank transfers are nearly always a bad idea.

I haven't read it all but:

Leave a negative if you haven't already and 1 star for everything.
I see you've contacted the police. Tell them you expect them to investigate (it's not hard, you have her bank details..almost certainly) and if they make excuses, make a complaint for "neglect of duty". The police will often avoid investigating things if they can. Apart from if you have a tiny defect on your car or go 1mph over the speed limit.
Contact eBay.
Start civil action.

Good luck.

badgeroncaffeine Wed 30-Jan-13 18:25:45

Another piece of advice, start a thread on the eBay "Buyer Central" forum page

While people on Mumsnet are great, the people there are extremely knowledgeable.

JakeBullet Wed 30-Jan-13 18:50:54

..sad That is awful.....really hope the police will take this up for you. Surely they can't refuse to investigate what is basically a theft.

AllOverIt Wed 30-Jan-13 21:52:07

I hope you have results OP. A similar thing happened to me, but thankfully I paid through PayPal so it was sorted.

I think EBay offer some protection, not everyone pays through Paypal. angry

Ninjaforever Fri 01-Feb-13 09:27:49

I think you should name and shame if you have indeed been ripped off. Similar thing happened to me a few years ago, my very first baby purchase for my first child. I was gutted. Turns out the person was a known 'offender'.

MissAnglia Sun 03-Feb-13 20:28:27

Any news?

SimplyRedHead Wed 13-Mar-13 23:07:08

Hi everyone

I reported the crime to the police and they've been excellent!

Luckily I have everything in writing because it all happened online. Both people involved have been interviewed and the girl has admitted taking my money and not delivering the pram whilst her boyfriend has denied all knowledge.

They are now both on bail. Looks like I may get my money back but it'll probably be £1,50 a week for the next 10 years or something similar!

Thanks again for all your help, it was invaluable.

fergoose Thu 14-Mar-13 10:47:59

so do you need to take them to small claims court to recover your money?
Terrible, am glad you went to the police.

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