The Northumberland County District Attorney’s Office is warning the public about a Craigslist scam involving an attempted sale of a motorcycle.
A married couple from Dornsife in mid-June was attempting to sell a Harley Davidson motorcycle on Craigslist when a woman calling herself Wendy Butler from Massachusetts showed interest in purchasing the motorcycle. The couple was in their late 50s and early 60s, according to District Attorney Tony Matulewicz.
The alleged buyer used FedEx to send a Cashier’s Check to the sellers in an amount of $3,000 over the agreed upon purchase price, along with instructions to THE seller that the $3,000 additional payment should be paid to the movers upon contact. When the sellers insisted the buyer meet in person in order to properly transfer the title, the buyer stopped all communication, and the sellers contacted law enforcement, according to the DA.
The intent of the scam was to convince the sellers that they received full payment for their motorcycle plus an additional payment of $3,000, which they would pay to the persons pretending to be movers. In a successful scam of this type, the movers would have contacted the sellers by phone and asked to be paid $3,000 before physically appearing to take possession of the motorcycle. The scammers had no intention to purchase the motorcycle and no one would appear in person, according to the DA.
Craigslist scams are common, the DA said. The best approach when buying or selling on Craigslist is to verify the buyer’s identity and make the sale in person if possible. Be suspicious of any buyer who wants to purchase an item without looking at it. A scam is probable under any circumstance where the buyer sends you a check in the amount greater than the asking price, the DA said.