Police warn buyers of classifieds scams

POLICE are warning people to beware of classifieds scams.

The call comes after two allegedly bogus ads – one for a Jayco Sterling caravan and the other for a Harley Davidson – were published in Saturday’s Bendigo Advertiser.

The 2010 24-inch caravan is on sale for $20,500 while the FLSTF 2008 motorcycle is advertised for $12,500.

Detective Senior Constable Tom Harper said both items were worth much more than their advertised value.

“It’s a total scam,” he said. “This van is legitimately for sale elsewhere.

“Someone has plagiarised, taken the image, and they’ve then used a bodgy phone number.

“What happens is you contact that phone number, it doesn’t answer and you then receive a text advising you to contact the person via an email address and the correspondence is done by email.

“The only problem is that you’re not communicating with the owner of the van.”

Police believe the alleged scam is being run from overseas.

Senior Detective Harper said police became aware of the alleged scam through a man who was looking at buying the caravan.

“As a result of that, we’ve established that it’s been placed for sale here and over in the Wimmera,” he said.

“If anyone’s looking at buying it, do not.”

Senior Detective Harper said if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

“People should also look out for different phone numbers and phone numbers that aren’t recognisable,” he said.

“They should also be wary of people who want to communicate purely by text or by email – who won’t do face-to-face or speak to you on the phone.

“Another thing to look out for is payment with the promise of delivery but without the opportunity to inspect the goods at any stage.”

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