SCAM on the cannon
Wednesday, January 9, 200828 Comments
When using thecannon.ca for textbook selling and classifieds in this busy time of the new year please be advised; there's a scam going on! Multiple people have come forward to share a common experience that could have put them into serious debt.
Most cases are very similar; students with a post on thecannon.ca were approached by a man who wanted to buy their text books and have them shipped to France. The person was pushy about getting things done quickly. He wrote almost daily emails to the seller, all with very poor grammar. He tried to use pity and guilt to speed up the process by talking about his 'dead brother', saying he needed the money back soon to help with funeral costs. Multiple times he included pictures of a dead person in a gruesome car crash.
He used at least three names; Frank Desmond, Garry Mansion, and Brown Johnson.
The scam works when the buyer sends an excess amount of money to the seller in the form of postal money orders. Then he requests that the excess funds be made available through a delivery service, in this case, western union. He claims the excess funds are for shipping and the remaining funds should be sent back along with the package. So the seller would deposit these cheques, take out the money, and send the money back along with the package to the buyer. Soon the bank would discover that the cheques are fake and would cancel them, leaving the seller in debt.
Chelsea O'Connor, an applied human nutrition student, received a 850 dollar money order for a text book from Garry Mansion. "He was very forceful saying; 'why haven't you gotten the payment yet?' I didn't know what a money order was so i took it to the post office where I was told it was a fake and I should go to the cops." Because she avoided becoming a victim the police could not follow up on the matter, but they told her to cut off all contact with him and inform him she had contacted the police.
"This guy is scary. Technically, I thought I might have 850 dollars of his money and I didn't want him to come after me" O'Connor said.
This scam has not just happened to those selling text books, others who were selling anything from apartments for rent to clothing were targeted as well.
If YOU have had an interaction with this same scam, possibly with a different name or tactic you can post your story below.