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P-P-P-PowerBook for a S-S-S-Scammer...

CmdrTaco posted more than 10 years ago | from the thats-just-a-good-laugh dept.

It's funny.  Laugh. 540

kormoc writes "It all started with a ebay auction when the seller got a email from a dude who wanted to scam him. It was a normal setup and it went horribly wrong... for the scammer. This has turned from a awful plight for a ebay user to a wonderful prank on the scammer. Throw in some crazy brits with digicams and you have the making of a great story. Mirror Mirror" That should get the coffee out your nostrils on a fine sunday morning. Note that you have to download the PDF to read the story.

cancel ×

540 comments

T-T-T-Taco is a F-F-F-Faggot (0, Troll)

Proctal Relapse (467579) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167026)

S-S-S-S-S-Suck it D-D-D-Down

A bit hard to follow...... but funny.... (5, Interesting)

ewwhite (533880) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167032)

I loved the photos. This seemed like a big production. Any idea of the status of the "buyer" now?

Re:A bit hard to follow...... but funny.... (4, Informative)

Ishin (671694) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167381)

Somethingawful.com is the mastermind site behind all of this (couldn't find it mentioned in the pdf) but the address to their forum is forums.somethingawful.com and the original thread on their forum was here: http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?s= &threadid=1016390

It's a rather hilarious site and if you haven't explored all of their comedy goldmines and photoshop phridays you probably ought to give those a rundown, too.

Enjoy!

Re:A bit hard to follow...... but funny.... (3, Funny)

blkmagic (695087) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167396)

If you look at the dates, that was only last week (last e-mail May 11). They know he paid duties on it, so he definitely got burned.

Re:A bit hard to follow...... but funny.... (2, Interesting)

ScottGant (642590) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167425)

It all started with an eBay auction for a new G4 Powerbook. My friend Cory wanted me to sell it for him just days after he bought it. Probably because he realized, aside from looking cool, he had no real use for it.

Does anyone else think this is fishy in itself? After buying a new Powerbook, you say "Hey, it looks cool, but I really don't need it...here, sell it on eBay for me".

Couldn't he just return it? He had just bought it a few days earlier. Also, he must have known that he wasn't going to get back what he paid for it...so just for the sake of "looking cool" for a few days, he wasted a few hundred bucks? Yet the writer of the story says that he needed people to "kick in" for shipping to London for the scaming of the scammer...couldn't he just ask his rich friend that throws away money for the cash?

The whole thing sounds like it's totally made up, that there was no eBay auction and the guy that wrote it just was going for basic laughs...and everything in it is pure fiction. I'm probably wrong and everyone will say "but I saw all the stuff and was watching the posts"...but couldn't one person have done everything themself, stringing the viewers along for the laugh?

Funny? yes...real? I'm not so sure. Either way, real or fake, the guy that wrote it is very creative and a gifted writer!

What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (4, Interesting)

Geraden (15689) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167036)

I've often thought of doing something similar, but....

Even if they are being scammed, aren't this person and his/her accomplices committing mail/wire fraud?

I just wouldn't want to be on the other end if the scammer tried to fight back.

Scott

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (1)

PhoenixFlare (319467) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167078)

Even if they are being scammed, aren't this person and his/her accomplices committing mail/wire fraud?

IANAL, but while I think they are, technically...Somehow I doubt the scammer would have much of a leg to stand on to complain.

I just wouldn't want to be on the other end if the scammer tried to fight back.

It's not that hard to protect yourself...Just be careful about exactly what you give out in the way of personal info, and be creative. Look at some of the scam baiters that play with Nigerian emailers to see what I mean.

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (1)

Geraden (15689) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167103)

If the alleged scammer DID send payment somehow, all of a sudden he WOULD have a leg to stand on. Besides which, the sender declared a value FAR above the real value of goods sent. This means that not only has the receiver been scammed, but the government as well.

Maybe I'm just paranoid....

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (4, Insightful)

jlaxson (580785) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167112)

The government hasn't been scammed. If anything they've been unscammed. The government collected taxes way in excess of what they'd otherwise get if the package had been valued correctly.

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (1)

orcrist (16312) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167204)

If anything they've been unscammed.

Hmmmmm... Wouldn't that be anti-scammed? ;-)

-chris

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (4, Insightful)

puck01 (207782) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167129)

The scammer (buyer) faked an escrow service that disappeared shortly after the "item" was shipped. The escrow service was the way both parties agreed to send payment. Since this agreement was obviously violated on several levels, I cannot see how the "buyer" has a leg to stand on.

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (5, Interesting)

YankeeInExile (577704) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167149)

who says the value is far above the real value of goods sent?

As far as the beef with customs goes:

An artist can take ten dollars worth of canvas, smear five dollars of oilpaint on it, and sell it in a gallery for tens of thousands of dollars

By the same token, a sculptor can take a three ring binder, some magic markers, and a broken keyboard and make a sculpture easily worth two thousand.

Art is in the eye of the beholder

Since the eBay transaction never occured, they have no beef with him -- he merely used the contact made with the person who stole the german account to sell some artwork in a separate transaction

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (5, Funny)

PunchMonkey (261983) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167177)

who says the value is far above the real value of goods sent?

I agree... after all, if the P-p-p-powerbook resurfaces and finds it's way on ebay, I'm sure it'll fetch far more than a couple dollars (the value of the goods used in construction). :-) ... goddamnit... the scammer could still make his money back....

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (4, Funny)

WWWWolf (2428) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167419)

By the same token, a sculptor can take a three ring binder, some magic markers, and a broken keyboard and make a sculpture easily worth two thousand.

So this pppppowerbook is worth two thousand dollars? And cheap materials are worth tens of thousands?

Somehow, I'm imagining that the folks who came up with this way to trick scammers are laughing now, but wait 'til the scammer sells the pppppppowerbook to some modern art gallery or computer history museum. The scammers sure are smart! They can easily make zillions!

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (3, Insightful)

blkmagic (695087) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167428)

That logic doesn't follow in this case, unfortunately. It would be fraud because he didn't send the item described in the auction. If I sold you a stereo valued at $500 and sent a computer valued at $500 with no intention of sending the stereo you purchased, that is fraud. The customs declaration said "PowerBook," not art. Again, fraud. I have the feeling though, since the guy who started it was committing computer fraud (fraudulent web site for the purpose of theft), he's probably not going to press charges. :)

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (2, Insightful)

kah13 (318205) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167343)

Declared value on items is based upon invoice pricing, not 'current' real value. If you want to get a lower price, you have to pay for a professional 'valuation'.

So, since the agreed price was the amount 'paid' by the seller, that would be the declared value, not the aggregated cost of the parts used to make the product.

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (1)

Dmala (752610) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167110)

Even if they are being scammed, aren't this person and his/her accomplices committing mail/wire fraud?

I wouldn't think so. No actual money has changed hands, since the escrow service is bogus anyway. And I can't imagine that there are any laws against declaring too high a value for a package. If you want to pay extra taxes, I'm quite sure the government will be glad to collect.

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (5, Informative)

panurge (573432) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167144)

The scammer is in England and using an accomodation address. The sender is in the US. Where was the contract made? I bet that wasn't even specified, since it was off eBay. So who has legal jurisdiction? What's more, the arrangement is escrow, in theory. That means if the goods are unsatisfactory payment is not released. A genuine buyer would have to accept the risk that the duty would be paid and the goods would be unsatisfactory, and that the duty would not be recovered, unless there existed a proper contract specifying the country of jurisdiction and it was likely to be enforceable. This scammer has the option of visiting the US to start a lawsuit, but he has got to find a court which accepts jurisdiction, and all this is going to cost just a little more than $500.

The real moral of this story, I think, is don't get involved in interstate (that's state as in country, not as in US state) commerce unless you really know what you are doing, and you are going to be doing it often enough to make all the aggravation worthwhile. The scammer was obviously too dim to realise this since he hadn't realised in advance he would have to pay import duty and Value Added Tax, or even that someone might send him a fake parcel.

He was not scammed! (3, Funny)

twoslice (457793) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167241)

OS X would work just as good on this box as the real thing...

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (3, Insightful)

T-Ranger (10520) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167245)

A contract is void if it is based on an illegal purpose or contrary to public policy.[1]

Or, to put things another way: the scammer started it.

[1]wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (4, Interesting)

nycsubway (79012) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167279)

I love it. Nothing like screwing a scammer. I nearly fell for something like that about 5 years ago, although in reverse. Someone advertised a computer for sale for a really low price. I knew little about internet fraud at the time, so I beleived that because they advertised this computer for a low price, it must be true... otherwise they'd be lying, which people couldn't do! (duh)

So I emailed the person to express my interest in buying the computer. He writes back with a long description of their 'operation'. They hacked into 'major computer makers' and re-routed shipping containers to me because they felt that computer makers were overcharging, etc. They were doing it for the good of the public; stealing from rich computer makers to give to the public.

I almost fell for this, until I started to think about it. What if it was a scam? I couldn't contact the police, because I would have knowingly bought stolen goods. Wait! it must be a scam then!

Scammers come up with incredibly diverse kinds of scams, because someone will eventually fall for one of them.

Re:What a great way to start a dreary Sunday! (3, Interesting)

cloudturtle (260857) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167406)

Well it could quite possibly be both mail (UPS) and wire (internet to access e-mail and escrow account).

Basically the elements for mail and wire fraud are
A scheme to defraud (about a material fact)
Intent for the person to rely on the false information
and a mail or wire interaction.

What is interesting under the law is that an actual fraud does not need to be commited if the elements are met (unlike commom law fraud/misrepresentation which requires damages). The point is that the orignal scammer is still liable even though he never actually got the chance to defraud MyNameIsJeff (becuase he never recieved the real Pbook).

Now the scarry part is not the M&W fraud but the fact that Jeff had help. This would be a conspiracy to commit M&W fraud which is a federal felony as well. So even if they meet the M&W fraud (which would be real hard considering that they posted EVERYTHING to the web for evidence) there doesn't need to be a conviction on the substanitive crime for a conspiracy conviction.

Conspiracy might be a bit more attenuated becuase the second person (Gizmo_gun) just kind of jumped in, so there may not be the requisite agreement...

But i am going to stop now. I don't like the feeling that i am analyzing stuff on slashdot better than i did on my white collar crime final.

Where did I see this... (1, Informative)

Orne (144925) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167041)

Oh yea, Fark [fark.com] had it yesterday...

"Man sells PowerBook on Ebay, gets fraudulent offer, sends scammer p-p-p-powerbook instead"

Re:Where did I see this... (1, Interesting)

AgBullet (624575) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167064)

muaha. that was my first ever greenlighted fark submission. /me bows deeply.

Re:Where did I see this... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167079)

How the FUCK is this informative?

OMG GUYS HEY I SAW THIS YESTERDAY I AM LEETER THAN YOU!!

Shut the fuck up, clownshoe.

Re:Where did I see this... (5, Funny)

gnu-generation-one (717590) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167113)

"Herflich, prepare the fake banknotes to pay for the painting of the madonna with the big boobies"

Re:Where did I see this... (1)

jdcook (96434) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167133)

And Fark swiped it from Boing Boing [boingboing.net] . I think. Whatever, it's still funny.

Re:Where did I see this... (4, Informative)

protactin (206817) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167155)

Wow, well done.. and some of us saw it three weeks ago as it actually happened on the Something Awful forums [somethingawful.com] .

Re:Where did I see this... (1)

SignalTwoFive (780277) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167320)

Some of us EVEN PARTICIPATED!

it must be said... (5, Funny)

chachob (746500) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167045)

in soviet eBay, YOU scam the scammer!

Truly an awesome story. (5, Informative)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167061)

This originally started off as a "I think this guy is trying to rip of me off" post on the SA forums. Through the magic of peer pressure and paypal, it blossomed into this wonderful production.

The thread is now in the Comedy Goldmine here [somethingawful.com] and has over 3200 replies and 3/4ths of a million page views.

Re:Truly an awesome story. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167101)

3/4ths of a million page views. .....and now it's been linked on slashdot.....

Re:Truly an awesome story. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167217)

Seriously...

My suitemate is a SA goon (that's what they call themselves...) and he's been giving me updates on the situation almost every day.

Go read the article/PDF; it's what I'm going to do after posting this. Or at the very least, look at the pictures... they're hilarious. Instant classic. I'm glad this got out to the outside world.

My favorite is the bluetooth mouse....

pdf download here! (1)

AmigaAvenger (210519) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167065)

Here [space.edu] is a direct link to a cached .pdf, looks like their server (and mirrors) are already going down.

This originated from SomethingAwful (4, Informative)

rabtech (223758) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167067)

This originated at the Somethingawful forums; we followed the thread day-by-day as the events unfolded.

You can find the original thread here:
http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread .php?s= &threadid=1016390

Thanks to MyNameIsJeff and the SA forum community for a good laugh.

Re:This originated from SomethingAwful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167095)

e:f,b!

Re:This originated from SomethingAwful (1)

deep square leg (703399) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167201)

It was a hilarious thread. I was pressing F5 for days ;)

*I* read the article first *elsewhere*! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167328)

Bask in my glory, for I found the article [before now] at [non-slashdot site]! Forget discussing the contents, grok my meta-1337ness!

too long (-1)

Coneasfast (690509) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167075)

no mean to rant, but the pdf is too long, i can't be bothered to read it all, someone want to summarize it please? :)

Re:too long (5, Funny)

dougmc (70836) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167105)

no mean to rant, but the pdf is too long, i can't be bothered to read it all, someone want to summarize it please? :)
Sure!

It all started with a ebay auction when the seller got a email from a dude who wanted to scam him. It was a normal setup and it went horribly wrong... for the scammer. This has turned from a awful plight for a ebay user to a wonderful prank on the scammer. Throw in some crazy brits with digicams and you have the making of a great story.

Or were you looking for a *longer* summary?

Banned! (1)

yaffle (112785) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167111)

I hoep you got ten bux

Re:too long (1)

n0nsensical (633430) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167130)

Scammer attempts escrow fraud for a notebook computer. Computer seller sends fake computer to scammer who believes the scam is working, pays 27.5% tax on the "computer's" value of $2000, and presumably discovers he has just been owned.

(Scammer will get the last laugh as seller will soon be going to Federal pound-me-in-the-ass prison for mail fraud.)

Mail^h^h^h^hFedEx fraud? (1)

theguru (70699) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167194)

Do the mail fraud laws apply to FedEx and other non-USPS carriers? I thought, by definition, only the USPS could be used for delivering mail. FedEx and UPS are not allowed to carrier common postal correspondance, only parcels and time sensative documents.

Re:too long (1)

Peyna (14792) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167205)

The scammer committed fraud first; and thus the original contract regarding the sale of the powerbook was void at that point. Anything that happened after that isn't really fraud anymore, at least with respect to the sale of the powerbook.

Think of it like selling a car, if the guy doesn't give you any money, or attempts to defraud you through non-payment; and you deliver a different product, there is no fraud on your part.

Re:too long (4, Insightful)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167244)

Scammer will get the last laugh as seller will soon be going to Federal pound-me-in-the-ass prison for mail fraud.

Except that there's not law in either the UK or USA that says you have to send a REAL powerbook to someone who DIDN'T pay you for it. He pretends to pay, you pretend to send him a real computer.

Re:too long (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167299)

It's not fraud since he's not claiming insurance or anything like that on it. It's a work of art, so who can judge whether or not it's really worth 2 grand? I'm sure there are some among us goons that would pay close to that for it. Also I highly doubt the British government is gonna complain about getting a couple hundred bucks in extra taxes.

Re:too long (1)

n0nsensical (633430) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167412)

Ok, ok, you're all right, he's probably not going to prison. But it would be ironic if he did. I'm sure some lawyer could find some law he was violating. =P

Re:too long (4, Informative)

KarmaPolice (212543) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167138)

Having read it all, here I go with a summary:
A guy was selling an Apple Laptop and a scammer offered to buy it. The scam was revealed when the scammer tried to do the payment through a fake escrow site. The seller then shipped the "laptop" in the pictures along with some heavy books so the package would feel like the real deal.

The seller then got donations via paypal to pay the $180 for shipment. The really funny part is that he had to give a value of the package and he said $2000. The scammer then had to pay a tax of the package value to actually recieve the package.

It wasn't all that easy. It almost didn't happend but FedEx trace-system confirms that the scammer actually paid customs to get the package released...that's how it ends! Read the entire story - it's funny!

Worth mentioning: (1)

The Tyro (247333) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167195)

the tax the scammer had to pay was in the neighborhood of $500+

Brilliant... way to stick a thumb in the scammer's eye!

also... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167364)

It should also be mentioned that ebay was prodded into investigating the account of the top bidder and found that it was the same guy - and that he had hacked the account (the real owner was innocent).

So this guy was into all sorts of trouble.

Re:too long (5, Funny)

Sgs-Cruz (526085) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167238)

You know that tl;dr is bannable, right?

Anybody have a bittorrent link? (-1, Troll)

Noose For A Neck (610324) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167090)

It'll probably help to put one up before the site is slashdotted.

Did they really end up catching this guy as he opened up the package? I was reading the PDF yesterday (got the link off of MeFi [metafilter.com] and the story ended as they were waiting for it to get delivered.

Personally, I think it's pretty horrible to defraud someone in this manner. While I'm sure this guy in the UK is not totally without blame, it seems pretty goddamn stupid to send someone a fraudulent package with a ring binder instead of a laptop and make them pay ~$300 in VAT and then post all about your international mail fraud exploits on the Internet.

Re:Anybody have a bittorrent link? (1)

CoolCash (528004) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167123)

You didn't read the article. The sender is only scamming the buyer after he found out that the buyer was using a fraudulant escrow service, to scam him.

Re:Anybody have a bittorrent link? (1, Informative)

PatrickThomson (712694) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167186)

Read the MOTHERFUCKING FIRST LINE OF THE ARTICLE YOU STUPID FUCK. Jesus, every day people get dumber. What next, people posting about how it's a disgrace the pope isn't catholic?

Oh, boo hoo. Poor thief. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167215)

How horrible of them to trick a thief trying to steal $2,000 from them into paying $600 in taxes.

In most societies, if you do something bad, you get punished for it. The only difference here is the state isn't handing out the punishments.

And if push came to shove, I'm sure the scammer would rather be screwed out of a few hundred bucks in taxes than sent to prison.

If anything, he got off lucky. Imagine if that guy got scammed and filed a report to the FBI.

Re:Anybody have a bittorrent link? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167243)

Ahhh ... the obligatory "where's the torrent?" post. I am waiting for the "the damn site is slashdotted" post.

Re:Anybody have a bittorrent link? (2, Funny)

orcrist (16312) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167249)

Personally, I think it's pretty horrible to defraud someone in this manner. While I'm sure this guy in the UK is not totally without blame...

Not totally without blame? Are you in politics? Maybe Rumsfeld could use someone of your talents.

-chris

Mirror, mirror on the wall (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167119)

who is the dumbest of all?

WFT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Where can I get THAT powerbook? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167121)

I thought powerbooks only had one mouse button, they have two!

Just wait for the follow-up story (4, Insightful)

apg (66778) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167142)

You know it's coming: Scammer auctions P-P-P-Powerbook on eBay to cover cost of customs duty.

This story is getting popular enough that it just might work.

Re:Just wait for the follow-up story (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167166)

I'm sure you could get a fair amount for the original P-P-P-Powerbook. Trouble is, to sell it, you'd implicate yourself in attempted fraud.

A bit confused (3, Interesting)

Jonathan (5011) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167145)

I've read the pdf and I still don't quite get it all. What did the professor in Indiana have to do with anything? Was his site merely hacked, or was he in cahoots with the scammer?

Re:A bit confused (3, Interesting)

Jon Kent (777707) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167189)

My thoughts exactly!

There was absolutely zero followup with regard to Mr. Saral Surakul - our esteemed college professor. It would be interesting to know whether his identity was simply hijacked/spoofed for the purposes of domain registration or whether he was in fact complicit in the scam.

An entertaing read nevertheless.

Re:A bit confused (5, Insightful)

YankeeInExile (577704) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167219)

My instinct tells me the prof in Terre Haute has nothing to do with it, and just had his name pulled out of a directory to be stuck on a domain registration, as a red herring.

The end isn't quite clear... (1)

Fnkmaster (89084) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167176)

I gather the brit-spies weren't able to actually stake out the location on the relevant morning to catch the perp in the act of receiving the package?


That's the only part of the story that's a bit of a shame - after all that work, it woulda been nice to have some pics of the fraudster received the p-p-powerbook, not that they necessarily would have opened it on the spot. Oh well. Still, they did succeed in a bit of financial punishment to the scammer with the 27% import duty.

Re:The end isn't quite clear... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167192)

I gather the brit-spies weren't able to actually stake out the location on the relevant morning to catch the perp in the act of receiving the package?

They were but, IIRC, they didn't take pictures of the person because it would have been too suspicious. They did get pictures and a video of the delivery truck when it arrived and delivered the package. A SomethingAwful goon was staked out in the Internet cafe using one of its computers with a webcam.

Re:The end isn't quite clear... (3, Interesting)

TehHustler (709893) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167202)

Er they did get the van arriving on video, and there was a guy inside when the package was opened, and he was arguing on the phone with the person picking it up, saying there was something wrong. No pictures of his face when he opened it up, unfortunately Another SA Goon checking in, I cant believe this made Slashdot.

LOL (1)

shadowkoder (707230) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167185)

Wow, talk about support from the community. Even though this may be teasing legal bounds, I say the guy gets what he deserves! I can't wait to see if this guy gives a reply. The guy should send the pdf to him, just to rub it in his face :)

Legality? (3, Interesting)

gabeman-o (325552) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167196)

Is it legal to do this even though he "knew" this was a scam?

Re:Legality? (1)

Jon Kent (777707) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167208)

Legal, no. Fair game? You bet!

Re:Legality? (4, Insightful)

JessLeah (625838) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167357)

"What is right is not necessarily legal. What is legal is not necessarily right."

Re:Legality? (1)

Epistax (544591) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167417)

It is probably illegal to say the package is worth $2000 to customs. Aside from that... I don't think so.

I love the smell of justice in the morning! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167211)

Smells like... irony!

Is there anything in life so sweet as turning the tables on some shitsack who's trying to scam you? If there is, I've never heard of it.

Poor Mirrors (1)

quantaman (517394) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167218)

With the mirror links posted on the front page the original site is quite responsive while the mirrors are being ./ed to oblivion!

All for it .... but (1, Interesting)

adzoox (615327) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167221)

You know, I'm all for this but some points have to be brought up:

Potentially the recipient could file a fraud charge against the seller AND against FedEx.

Take this example into mind:

When on the playground as a child if you were hit and DID NOT hit back - you were safe. But if you hit back, even if in self defense, both of you went to the office.

I would also like to point out that this seller defrauded Paypal, Fedex, eBay, the scammer and it just (in my opinion) tells scammers what mistakes to avoid in future, more sphisticated scams.

Lastly, I'd like to say - as I am an Apple parts dealer on eBay - selling or buying a PowerBook on eBay or Yahoo auctions is the riskiest thing you could POSSIBLY do. If you even bid in ANY POWERBOOK auction or SELL ANY PowerBook (newer than 3 years) you are deluged with offers from Romania (usually) for $800 PowerBook G4 17". What's funny, is that some even offer AppleCare.

The story was interesting and entertaining - but the outlets to properly "report a crime" are readily available and much less costly.

Re:All for it .... but (0, Redundant)

pipeb0mb (60758) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167236)

:rolleyes:

Re:All for it .... but (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167375)

Wow you actually had to wait 20 seconds post time to type that

Re:All for it .... but (2, Funny)

mistered (28404) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167281)

I don't get it. What does a playground have to do with FedEx?

Re:All for it .... but (4, Informative)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167324)

I would also like to point out that this seller defrauded Paypal, Fedex, eBay

Did you even READ the damn story? The "transaction" went through a FAKE ESCROW SERVICE, not Paypal. The scammer did NOT buy the item through ebay, it was settled outside of ebay.

Read->Comprehend->Post.

Re:All for it .... but (0, Interesting)

adzoox (615327) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167347)

Yes I read the whole thing - he DID use paypal to get funds to ship the item.

He DID use eBay to sell a real item but ACTUALLY shipped a fake item

He DID use fedex to ship a fraudulent item.

Vigilante justice is NOT legal no matter how cute the story or punishing to the criminal.

Re:All for it .... but (2, Insightful)

DrEldarion (114072) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167411)

So explain to me how he defrauded paypal, ebay, and fedex again? I guess getting money to ship an item is fraud against paypal? Using ebay to try and sell a legitimate item, then getting an offer OUTSIDE ebay is defrauding ebay? Shipping an item to someone is defrauding fedex? He used these services as they were intended, and did not commit fraud against any of them.

It's a HUGE stretch to even consider this "fraud" by the seller in the first place, considering THERE WAS NO REAL TRANSACTION TO BEGIN WITH.

Re:All for it .... but (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167429)

Okay, so maybe you read, but you missed the critical "comprehend" part, moron.

RTFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167363)

I would also like to point out that this seller defrauded Paypal, Fedex, eBay, the scammer

Paypal was not involved.

Fedex, per the legal definition of fraud (in which financial gain or advantage is given through use of deception), was not defrauded.

eBay emailed the seller to say the transaction was void due to the stolen account.

and it just (in my opinion) tells scammers what mistakes to avoid in future, more sphisticated scams.

Right, security through obscurity, that always works...

Re:All for it .... but (1)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167424)

but the outlets to properly "report a crime" are readily available and much less costly.

Not to mention much less effective.

...but maybe you should RTFPDF (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167427)

I would also like to point out that this seller defrauded Paypal, Fedex, eBay, the scammer and it just (in my opinion) tells scammers what mistakes to avoid in future, more sphisticated scams.

WTF are you talking about? I read the story, so please tell me:

How did he defraud Paypal? He asked people to contribute a buck via Paypal to help cover the costs of shipping this item overseas. They knew exactly what it was for and chose to contribute of their own free will. There was no trickery involved. The auction payment never went to Paypal, it went to a phony escrow service, i.e. there never was a payment.

How did he defraud FedEx? They were paid for their services.

How did he defraud eBay? They got their listing fee and final value fee on the auction. It doesn't look like he has relisted the PowerBook for sale, so he does not meet the requirements to have the final value fee refunded due to a non-paying bidder.

Finally, who cares if the intended victim screwed the scammer? What's the shithead going to do, press charges? I'd like to hear that phone call to the police: "Hey, I was trying to defraud this guy out of his $2000+ PowerBook and he sniffed out the scam, turned it around, and made me pay $X in taxes on a 3-ring binder-- now will someone please prosecute him?"

This is not a very sophisticated scam if it can be put together by someone with such a poor grasp of English. The problem is not sophisticated scammers-- it's unsophisticated and/or just plain greedy scammees. I have sold quite a few laptops on eBay, and there are always idiots who try to get me to fall for stuff. Ain't gonna happen, because I will not ship overseas for any amount of money-- especially to the practically-lawless, armpit countries these scammers usually reside in (the scammer in this story was an exception). They also never want to do things the way I specify they will be done in my auction listings, which is something else that should set off alarm bells in the mind of any intelligent person. They always want to pay via escrow, or have me end the auction early and offer me some absurd amount of money to do it. I don't.

The moral of the story is, don't be stupid and greedy and you won't get scammed. The guy who pranked this scammer wasn't, and didn't.

~Philly

Holy PMP, Batman. (1)

doppleganger871 (303020) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167226)

As the video clip of the kid getting his rear bumper pulled off in the snow said...

"Damn."

That's all.

:gb2gbs: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167230)

:gb2gbs:

Mirrored here:
www.mrbumper.com

Lets see how long my mirror lasts. (1)

dumbmrblah (614801) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167246)

haha

amusing but not the best (5, Funny)

mabu (178417) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167278)

The best scammer-scam I've ever seen is the infamous The Holy Church of Fish Bread & Wine [419eater.com] . If you haven't seen that one, be sure to check it out.

Turning the tables is funny, but also... (1)

tobycat (722641) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167283)

I can't help but feel that the scammer is getting his just desserts. On the other hand, I believe it's worth taking note of what this activity really is: vigilante scamming, also known as taking the law into your own hands.

If going outside the legal system to fight back is OK in this situation, where else is it OK to do this? One wonders how steep this particular slippery slope is.

Not Funny... (1)

datastalker (775227) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167307)

...while things like this can be humourous, chances are that the scammer *really* used a stolen credit card to make the payments. While this guy is having fun jerking a scammer around, and Slashdot readers are getting a big kick out of it, someone else is having a really crappy Sunday morning wondering wy their credit card bill is suddenly $2400 higher.

Re:Not Funny... (2, Insightful)

pipeb0mb (60758) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167331)

Read. Comprehend. Post.

Re:Not Funny... (4, Informative)

mistered (28404) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167341)

Please, read the link before you post. Chances are *not* that the scammer used a stolen credit card.

The "payment" for the P-P-P-Powerbook was a fake escrow site. It seems the scammer spent a few hundred GBP of his own money to release the package from customs, and a bunch of SomethingAweful goons put up the money for the FedEx shipment in the first place. But no innocent person is out any money.

Re:Not Funny... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167359)

Well I wouldn't be surprised if he used a stolen credit card for the customs duty, but you're right about the fake escrow site.

Re:Not Funny... (1)

datastalker (775227) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167433)

Ok, so maybe I posted before I read that the escrow site was a fake, but do you honestly think this guy paid for the taxes with his own money? Come on, people. Not everything exists for the amusement of Slashdot people.

Bitter Sweet? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9167345)

I highly doubt our scammer paid his own money for the customs duty. Despite absolutely retarded scam techniques, he did use a buggered box and failed to reveal himself at each step. My instincts tell me he paid the tax with a stolen credit card probably.

So he got made the fool and wasted some of his time. Unless he gets caught and charged with various fradulencies he's just going to do it again to someone less astute.

non PDF (2, Informative)

seanismdotcom (746929) | more than 10 years ago | (#9167356)

Here is a HTML version of the PDF file... http://www.mannequin3d.com/powerbook/
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