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My encounter with the Russian mob on eBay: A cautionary tale....

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I just feel like telling this story....  

A while back, I sold a used, water damaged iPhone on eBay for $70.  I had never had any kind of fraud issue on eBay, and was not my usual vigilant self that day.

The buyer messaged me and said that the eBay payment system wasn't working in the listing, and could he paypal me directly.  I said no problem (I know, I know.)
Received a payment, but from a different name than the buyer.  (Yep, I know.)
Sent the thing to the stated shipping address in Florida.

Once it had been received by the buyer, the paypal payment was reversed.  The payer claimed to never have received the item.  Of course, there was nothing I could do, because I couldn't connect the payer to the buyer.  When I messaged the buyer, he had a great laugh at my expense, mocked me and sent me gross porn pictures.  Sigh.  When I researched the address and the buyer name, I found that there is a Russian (actually Georgian) gang that steals items on eBay and uses the address of a freight forwarder in Florida to have them shipped to Georgia.  Knowing that it was a lost cause, I nevertheless did my due diligence reported the fraud and system to FBI, USPS, PayPal, etc., and messaged eBay to remove the user.

The next morning, I received a message from the buyer: "Please unlock the phone."
I HAD NOT UNLOCKED THE PHONE CORRECTLY – Yay me!
I went into my iCloud account and put a lock on the phone with Erase instructions should he ever managed to crack in.

The Creep assured me that if I would only unlock the phone, he would send payment straight away!  I told him what I thought of him.  Nevertheless, he persisted.    I said, "Nyet."  And that is the end of the story.  I have to say that the satisfaction of getting revenge was worth the trouble.  Plus, the joy of knowing exactly what kind of water damage was done to that phone.  

Moderator Comment: This thread is mirrored to these forums: ONLINE AUCTION INFO, OFF TOPIC. — May. 28, 2017 @ 7:34pm
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Green for story time, thanks for sharing.

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I not done with you. Unlock phone now, or I send enforcer.

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In Russia phone drops you in the shitter.

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In Russia, we elect YOUR president.

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ZenNUTS said:   In Russia, we elect YOUR president.
  So true.  

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ZenNUTS said:   In Russia, we elect YOUR president.
In America you elect President and they gone in 4-8 years.  The Supreme Court Justices that President gets put on the bench are there for a long long time.  That's who you elect President for in America 101, and the Russians have nothing to do with that.make no mistake about it

Feel free to delete this Mods  I just wanted to give some edjumication 

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Larryslug said:   
ZenNUTS said:   In Russia, we elect YOUR president.
In America you elect President and they gone in 4-8 years.  The Supreme Court Justices that President gets put on the bench are there for a long long time.  That's who you elect President for in America 101, and the Russians have nothing to do with that.
 

  
*snort*

or, if you prefer

*snortski*

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I got scammed by the Russian mob, but under a lot worse circumstances. My car broke down on the Chicago Skyway on an out-of-state trip with my sick 5-month old to see her grandparents. I got hold of a tow truck company that told me it would be $150 plus tax to tow my car to the nearest dealer, which seemed reasonable. Luckily, I had a sibling who lived in Chicago who was there to pick up me, my wife and my daughter. After many hours of delays, the tow truck finally arrived and we followed it to the dealership, arriving at midnight. The driver saw that we had a crying baby and out-of-state plates. With my car on his flatbed, he told me with a thick Russian accent, "400 dollar, cash or I drive way, put you car in storage 100 dollar day." The SOB mobster/tow driver put my car up for ransom and gave us 30 minutes to find an ATM to get the $400 or we'd never see the car again. I wanted to call the cops but figured that on a Friday night, there was no good chance I could get the cops there before the driver made off with my car and with a sick baby, we caved, figuring our auto insurance would cover it in a worst-case scenario.

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That's not a Russian Mob scam, that's a Tow Truck scam. That happens all over the United States to people who don't buy Towing insurance and let themselves be 'hustled' by a predatory towing company.

Story told to me. Person gets into accident and the AAA tow truck shows up. Tows it to the yard and then asks for $450. Owner goes, why are you scamming me? Aren't you working with AAA. Tow Truck driver goes 'Do you have AAA'? Answer is No. And so the price is $450.  I'm sure if they had AAA, it would've been more reasonable (or possibly free)

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