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  1. #1
    jhall221 is offline Junior Member
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    Apr 2012
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    Buyer Claims Shipped Rocks Instead of Item (Filed Police Report)

    Florida

    First off I'd like to say hello to everyone in the wonderful community and I'm extremely happy to have stumbled upon this excellent resource. Anyways, onto my case. I will state a short and simple version followed by a very thorough and detail filled version. I wasn't quite sure if this was the appropriate location since this ultimately involves criminal charges but most of the paypal/internet related cases that I searched were posted in this section.

    Summary:

    I was the seller of a $800 RC Car. Buyer was met on an online RC Racing community message board exactly like this one. We agree upon a $800 price for the RC Car and the buyer sends me the funds via Paypal in gifted format. I ship the correct item as described with insurance and tracking. The buyer receives the item and claims I shipped him rocks. But, since the buyer sent the funds as gifted the only possible option he has of recovering said funds is to claim a Unauthorized Transaction. Paypal reviews the case and quickly determines that his claim was false and the funds are released back to myself. He then files a police report (Sheriffs Office) saying I shipped rocks in place of the RC Car. The buyer happens to live about an hour away in the same county. I've spoken to him on the phone and he claims they are making it a Grand Theft Case. The police report is now being processed and will take several days. Keep in the mind there are screen shots, texts, and phone calls regarding much of the previously stated case.

    Full Story:

    Again, I was the seller of an $800 RC Car. I opened a new thread on an online RC Racing community in the buy, sell, trade section. In this thread are several photos of the RC Car (taken by myself) as well as specifications. After I post my ad I proceed to check the "Wanting to Buy" section. The eventual buyer is found looking for the exact model that I am selling in this section. A private message is sent to the buyer detailing my RC Car, a link to the ad, and my phone number for other means of communication (screenshot available). The buyer proceeds to contact me via phone and we discuss price, condition, and other details. The money is sent as gifted funds via Paypal shortly after. The initial plan was to meet since he lived so close but after numerous attempts of doing so and failing (via phone calls and texts), I decide to ship the package instead. The package is shipped USPS with insurance for $800, tracking, and signature conformation (physical recites available as proof). The next day, the package is received by the buyer. After receiving the package, the buyer files a Unauthorized Transaction claim on Paypal. The buyer contacts me by phone and claims that rocks were in the box and no RC Car. I assure him that the RC Car was in there at the time of shipping. He quickly gets frustrated and starts shouting at which point I hang up the phone. Afterwards, the buyer sends me a text stating he has reported me on the RC Board, Paypal, and in the process of filing a police report. I send one text message stating the following: "You have the RC Car and you know it." I immediately log into Paypal and type a rebuttal to his Unauthorized Transaction case stating the following: "The gifted funds were sent & authorized by the account holder. The claims of an unauthorized transaction are simply false. Phone records of the call prior to the transaction from his phone number can be provided. And, the IP address should be checked." Paypal begins an investigation into the dispute and finds that it was indeed the account holder. The claim is resolved in favor of myself and the funds released. At this point, he publicly claims on the RC Board that Paypal denied his return because I have the insurance number and he would not lie about receiving the RC Car. The buyer proceeds to file a police report in my county and apparently claims that they are making it a Grand Theft Case. He states he will pursue the bank when he is provided a police report and that the bank will hold an investigation into Paypal.

    Questions/Thoughts:

    - I absolutely shipped the RC Car before someone asks.
    - The weight of the actual RC Car was about 4 pounds excluding package and packaging. The total weight of everything ready to ship was about 8 pounds. Can I provide this information/will it be of any relevancy?
    - What, if anything will the police do? How should I approach being contacted?
    - Is there any validity to his claim of the police making it "Grand Theft"
    - Should I file a counter police report for a stolen item or something that's otherwise appropriate?
    - He never once mentioned anything related to the RC Car to Paypal (to my knowledge). Instead he choose to fraudulently claim it was not him who sent the money. Can this information help/be relevant?
    - How does me having the insurance number have to do with anything?
    - Paypal clearly sided with me. Will this help?
    - Will texts, phone calls, and/or screen shots be used at all?
    - Could I propose he return the RC Car and I would gladly refund the money?

    I greatly appreciate any/all responses.
  2. #2
    swalsh411 is offline Senior Member
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    You don't know for sure either of the following:

    -The buyer did not receive rocks. (somebody could have opened the package in transit)
    -The buyer has actually filed a police report. (I don't think he really has)

    You have nothing to file a police report over unless he starts to harass you.

    I have done some trading via forums and my instinct is that this guy is trying to scam you. I would send him one final email that our transaction is complete and you will not be responding to any more messages. Then block his email. If he calls you incessantly you can file a police report for harassment.
  3. #3
    jhall221 is offline Junior Member
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    I see. I will certainly take that into consideration. I have been contacting attorneys in my area and they have provided me with several pieces of information after free consultations:

    - The detective based on my response/his investigation will either dismiss the case and/or decide to arrest me, letting the courts sort it out. Ideally the case is dismissed before it ever reaches the courts.
    - If I am contacted by the police I am to agree only to a written statement and no questions. This is assuming I do not hire an attorney. If I do, I am to state that the allegations are completely false and that my attorney will be providing a statement for me.
    - If there were witnesses at the time on me packaging and placing the marker in the box that will be important. There is a witness.
    - It's essentially a case of his word against mine.

    Hiring an attorney is rather expense and I'd like to avoid doing so if possible. I've heard of pro bono attorneys but I'm not to sure how/if that will be viable. I have researched any free/pro bono attorneys in the area and found one. They are unfortunately closed and will have to be reached tomorrow.
  4. #4
    swalsh411 is offline Senior Member
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    That sounds about right. I think the guy is bluffing.
  5. #5
    jhall221 is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by swalsh411 View Post
    That sounds about right. I think the guy is bluffing.
    The buyer has made the following claims as of today in the thread:

    1. He knows several police officers in this county and that his personal friend who's an officer will be looking into the case. Can this be used against him to prove some sort of bias?
    2. The case will be assigned to white collar crimes and a detective will be initiating contact with me. If I continue to deny his allegations, the buyer will then have the option of filing criminal charges against me.
    Last edited by jhall221; 04-07-2012 at 07:47 PM.
  6. #6
    swalsh411 is offline Senior Member
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    The claims he is making further reinforce my opinion that he is bluffing and full of s*it. Honestly, what are the chances that he knows "several" police officers in your county?. As icing on the cake, if he is actually claiming that *he* gets to decide if criminal charges are filed then you know he is full of it. DA's make that decision; not private citizens. Follow my advice from earlier.

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