Beware of Scammer!

Here is a piece I thought I sold. I got an email saying that this person wanted to buy a piece of my art to surprise his wife on their anniversary. AND would I accept a check. I emailed back that I proposed this piece, the price plus crating and shipping, and that a bank check or payment by PayPal would be required. I was a bit suspicious, so didn’t want to spend much energy on it.

Meanwhile, I began to get the piece ready: meaning finished. I dyed all the shiny silk fabrics and pinned them to the background for the finished piece, complete with hundreds of pins. He texted back that he needed to send his personal check because his wife dealt with the family finances and he wanted it to be a surprise.

A close-up of the piece I call “Shiny”. Another text said that he was transferring to the Philippines and that a shipper would contact me about sending the work. And he would accept that I required that a check needed to be cashed by the bank.

I realized that squares of on of the fabrics were curling at the corners. Oh, my! I thought that wasn’t too bad but wouldn’t look like the photograph I’d sent. So, I set about flattening each and every one with archival double stick tape. The next text said the check would be coming and that it would include extra money that was to go to the shipper.

All of the pieces were laid so that the grain of the fabric switched 90 degrees to create the checkerboard effect. I also liked that often the silks weren’t ironed flat and added another shine to the fabrics. After awhile I got a text that the check had been delivered by Fed Ex. Soon it came to my door—empty except for a check written for an extra $1,000 written by a bank. I immediately mobile deposited it on my iPhone and a notice came that it would be held for 13 days. When I texted him that news, he said to take it to a teller or ATM because he couldn’t wait because that it would spoil the surprise for his wife. I called my bank and was told something was fishy if it was to be held that long. So he said to go ahead and deposit the check which I did. When the confirmation was emailed to me it said the reason for the hold on the check was: “Paying bank states check may not be paid.” I texted that back to him and have refused to respond to a couple of his further “testing me” texts. THE END.

13 thoughts on “Beware of Scammer!”

  1. So many people trying to relieve of us of our work and our hard earned cash. Good for you for checking before you mailed him the piece. Beautiful piece of work.

  2. Thanks for sharing so we can be as savvy as you, should something like this come up for us!

    You may want to keep an eye on the account you deposited the check to for the next couple of months, just in case. I got hit once by identity theft and it was awful.

  3. I hope he didn’t get your bank account number to do something with later. Also the texting thing worries me for security because you never know what they can do with your number. Good luck on this one Peggy. I know you were trying to be nice and help this guy but I hope in the future you make yourself a rule as I have which is if someone wants to purchase with a check it has to be certified by bank and must clear my account before I release merchandise or ship merchandise.

  4. This is becoming a very common ploy on many sites. We had it happen when trying to sell a Burberry topcoat. Pretty much the same story, buying it as a surprise for a cousin…..
    The premise smelled stinky so we did not respond after a few communications.
    We try to sell local as much a possible and check out the buyers as much as we can.
    Sorry you had to go through this.

  5. So sorry you had to go through this. It is such a beautiful piece, I am glad this dishonest person won’t get it. Someone nobler will get it.

  6. Lucky you the cycle was not completed. They have you give the ‘shipper’ the extra money plus the piece. They can care less about the piece, they now have money from you backed up with a check that will no doubt bounce.
    They try to do it all the time. Be careful!
    On the bright side: it forced you to finish the lovely piece!

  7. Great that you didn’t get scammed. So many trusting folks are getting taken for a ride which is really terrible.
    Lessons learned


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