May 25, 2013 at 7:12 pm #1303397
I was recently scammed in my search for a Tarptent Stratospire 2 and figured I would alert everyone on BPL in order to help anyone else avoid the same fate. The guy's name is William Park (at least that what he goes by) and his email is firstname.lastname@example.org. The weird thing is I contacted him after getting his name from someone else on the board, instead of the other way around. Against my best judgement I sent him a money order (stupid I know) instead of Paypal. I also figured out that he's using one of Franco Darioli's pictures of the tent that I was unable to find anywhere on here or on Google. Only reason I figured out it was Franco's was by examining his backyard fence in other pictures. Anyways, just wanted to alert everyone in the off chance that he contacts them with offers to any WTB threads.May 25, 2013 at 7:40 pm #1989751
That blows. How long has it been since you had contact. sent the MO?May 25, 2013 at 7:54 pm #1989757
@cameronLocale: The WOODS
Anybody else have this problem?
Edit – I took out something that I thought MIGHT come across in a way that would make an innocent partly look suspicious. Nothing to see there.
I've never been scammed here but all my purchases were from members that had been here a long time. Someone interested in a quick scam is unlikely to spend three years discussing gear just to scam me out of $80 or so.May 25, 2013 at 8:05 pm #1989759
I've actually been in contact with him within the last day. I sent the money order on the 10th and it was cashed last Friday. He's saying he's sick and hasn't been able to leave the house and mail it. That's the weird thing. Once you get your money why ever even answer my emails? Who knows what the motivation is. I told him I'd inform the apartment complex I sent the money order to that a mail fraud scheme was being run out of their complex so maybe that's why he still answering me.May 25, 2013 at 8:08 pm #1989761
Ben 2 WorldParticipant
@ben2worldLocale: So Cal
I imagine scammers are quick to cash out and break all communication. This person waited a good ten days to cash your money order? Doesn't seem to fit the mold. Anyway, hope springs eternal… maybe you will get your tent — just taking an annoyingly longer time?
Also, curious, was this sale posted on our forum? Or was the transaction made 'offline'?May 25, 2013 at 8:10 pm #1989762
Luke, that's another weird thing about it. It wasn't that great of a deal. $250 for a $330 tent so I'd figured I'd buy used and save a bit of money. It's not like he was trying to attract someone with a really great price. Plus I got his name and email from another member instead of him finding me. I did have reservations but tried to make sure it wasn't too good to be true. I had him send me pics of the tent set up and back checked them against hundreds of Google images. Only after a week of waiting was I able to make the connection between the fence in the pictures and the once in most of Franco's pics.May 25, 2013 at 8:13 pm #1989764
I originally posted a WTB thread for the tent but never got any offers. I found another WTB thread from someone else who said they got two offers and bought one of them. I PM'd the author seeing if I could get the info for the other guy who offered him the tent that he didn't buy. He got back to me with Mr. Park's email and everything went from there.May 25, 2013 at 8:14 pm #1989765
That's the weird thing. Why keep up the contact once you have the money? Can't really understand the motivation to do so so that's the only thing that keeps my hopes up.May 25, 2013 at 8:15 pm #1989766
Ben 2 WorldParticipant
@ben2worldLocale: So Cal
I see. After reading your subsequent post above, I revised mine…
Anyway, I hope your tent will show up… my hunch is that it will… eventually.May 25, 2013 at 8:16 pm #1989767
Also forgot to mention that he had me send the money order to an Ann Hogue. Another curious thing that made me nervous but sadly didn't stop me. So definitely look out for that name as well if you get an offer on an item from them.May 25, 2013 at 8:18 pm #1989769
I put up a WTB for some Gray 10d – William Park responded that he had some available. I replied back, but I have not heard back. I'll make sure that I don't send him any money!May 25, 2013 at 8:28 pm #1989770
Glad to see I helped someone. I also saw someone else on another WTB TT SS2 thread say someone contacted him about selling one and wanting a money order. I let him know my story and he told me it was indeed Mr. Park. Based on that I contacted Mr. Park under a different name and email and he offered the tent to me again. That's when I let him know he was caught and he got back to me saying he had an agent or something that could get him another one for my fake guy. Another telltale sign was his English wasn't great so beware anyone that fits that bill. Another classic warning sign I ignored but I wasn't necessarily expecting a Korean scammer, maybe Nigerian.May 25, 2013 at 8:54 pm #1989774
Did the guy have much of a history on Bpl?May 25, 2013 at 8:58 pm #1989775
I couldn't find a profile for him. I was given his email by another member and am unsure whether he got it through PM. I would guess that would have to be the case and will PM the other member and see what his profile was.May 25, 2013 at 10:14 pm #1989787
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
What city is the scammer's mailing address in?
You should contact the postal service. It's mail fraud.May 26, 2013 at 5:33 am #1989822
I sent the money order to an address in Austin, TX. And I will be filing a mail fraud complaint with the Postal Inspection Service. Both my grandfather and uncle were Federal Postal Inspectors and my cousin is a postmaster so hopefully that'll encourage them to take the case more serious than normal.May 26, 2013 at 6:46 am #1989833
@codybartzLocale: Northern Minnesota
I was scammed as well. Luckily, I was able to cancel my payment before he was able to cash it.
I originally put out a post on gear swap to find a Tarptent StratoSpire 2. I had two people respond, one was Randy Worth and the other was William Park. I first chose Randy Worth, as his was the better deal. Randy sent me a StratoSpire 1 on accident, not realizing that is what he had. So I was refunded by Randy Worth, and I returned the tent to him.
Then I contacted William Park to see if he still had the StratoSpire 2 available. He said he did and we went forward with the deal. We had agreed on $235. I also was a bit weary of his English. He sent me 4 stock photos from the Tarptent website. He said he was located in Texas, but had me send the money to Shirley Alvarez in California. All signs that I decided to look past.
!!! >>> everyone please beware of William Park. email address email@example.comMay 26, 2013 at 7:27 am #1989840
Sorry to hear what happened guys, I hope you get your cash back.May 26, 2013 at 8:18 am #1989856
@wl1193Locale: East Bay
Go to 411.com and type in the address and or phone number. You can get a lot of info on whether its a home or business, sometimes who lives at the address and whether the phone number is land line or cell phone etc. It is free.
Whenever you send a money order etc to a third party at a different address than the person who it's for – run away. Don't do the deal.May 26, 2013 at 9:52 am #1989875
Sad to see there is that kind of thing here. Hope you get some resolution.
I guess we all need to pay attention to anything signs out of ordinary.
Lots of transactions take place with stock photos, or no photos. Its just quicker and easier that way. Most know what they want, what it looks like, and trust other members here to not be dishonest.
Getting a current photo, with recent newspaper (dated) in the photo is a good way to verify the seller at least has the item. I dont think a legitimate seller would mind providing that, I know I wouldnt.May 26, 2013 at 9:58 am #1989876
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
PayPal non-gift is the way to go. It covers both parties for fraud and charge backs.May 26, 2013 at 10:15 am #1989879
I send PayPal gift if the seller has a decent posting history on Bpl (not just on gear swap) if the person does not I will send Non gift.May 26, 2013 at 11:06 am #1989890
He initially sent me stock photos and I didn't think much of it. I've seen people do it on here before. Only after I initially get uncomfortable with the money order did I ask him for a real pic. Sadly didn't think to ask for a newspaper even though I'd seen it done. I'd just grown to trust people through this site. After he sent the photo and I wasn't able to find it on google pics I had my fears calmed a bit. And then I analyzed Franco's pics a but more and realized he had used one of them that I wasn't able to find. At least Cody was able to cancel the money order once I got ahold of him.May 26, 2013 at 11:13 am #1989894
@hipassLocale: Los Angeles
Once you start dealing with total internet strangers you will get screwed.Even though most here are or were total strangers with one another there is a history you can review and people have submitted personal credit card info to become members so there is less anonymity.The seller isnt a member here so that is a huge red flag.
I hope Dustin gets his money back.May 26, 2013 at 12:08 pm #1989910
My dog was once sent a credit card in the mail.
Having a credit card does not suddenly mean you are ethical, nor does having a membership (I had mine for 6 years). The key take away is pay by Paypal only and not the gift option to be fully a protected.
I hope you get your tent or cash back.
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