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Online Fraud: Drop Shipped LEGO, etc. (eBay, Amazon Marketplace, Bricklink, etc.)

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  • Has there been much evidence of this happening outside of the US? I've looked around eBay UK and I didn't spot anything that screamed scam.
  • edited January 2012
    ^
    I have been working for them and I don't understand how this is a scam - please help!
    I am in the UK.
  • edited January 2012
    ^^

    Yes, absolutely its been all over ebay UK. At the weekend there was a seller with about 20 items for sale. Was very obvious due to the postal address being Lego's, all items were current Lego sets, delivery was the same to the US and UK (!?!) and prices (auctions not buy it now) were very low. All images of the items were stock as well.

    I did contact ebay about these sales but they weren't interested (even though the auctions hadn't finished when they replied to me) and said I should contact the Police.

    I've just had a look now and there are one or two suspicious auctions I found after a quick look - but not as obvious as before so they may be genuine - I suspect that the dodgy auctions might be very short term ones - i.e. just a day rather than 7 day listings.

    If you want, just search ebay for sets around the £100 RRP mark - i.e. train sets, some technic sets, kingdoms joust etc.

  • ^ that's what I've been doing but not every day. Perhaps I've just missed them then.
  • To Flump6523, yes I did get caught up in this scam - unknowingly and foolishly but when I realised it could be a scam I contacted the police, Thor@Lego, EBay and Paypal and I am helping them with their enquiries.
  • Wonderful, they are now getting featured status on Amazon with the buy box...

    Take a look at the Tower Bridge:

    http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-4657564-Tower-Bridge-10214/dp/B003Q6BQOY/

    $219 plus shipping, if you read the condition notes it says you can only order one at a time (in misspelled English no less), or he'll cancel your order. They also don't ship anywhere FedEx doesn't ship, naturally.
  • edited January 2012
    Wonderful, they are now getting featured status on Amazon with the buy box...

    Take a look at the Tower Bridge:

    http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-4657564-Tower-Bridge-10214/dp/B003Q6BQOY/

    $219 plus shipping, if you read the condition notes it says you can only order one at a time (in misspelled English no less), or he'll cancel your order. They also don't ship anywhere FedEx doesn't ship, naturally.
    What's also interesting is that it looks like this bogus price for the new set is driving down the price on the used Amazon Warehouse sets, which I presume are not stolen goods!
  • edited January 2012
    ^ that's what I've been doing but not every day. Perhaps I've just missed them then.
    They're definitely not as prominent. Theres a 'LEGO 7938 CITY TRAIN SET, BRAND NEW AND FULLY SEALED' finishing at 9pm Saturday and the seller has other BNSB lego for sale too. What looks suspicious with this is, a) its on auction starting at £20 and b) more so that it has a delivery cost of just £5.95.

    It may be 100% legit, but with the recent goings on it looks incredibly good value. These current items are very different to the items in the sellers feedback list as well.
  • @senatorblutarsky:
    Thanks for the ioffer page update; that's a new one to me; I'll try getting them shut down asap.

    I'll email Cabelas, Forever 21 and Fandago as well.

    Cheers,

    Thor
  • Doing a quick search on ebay today, I also found two more sellers (acceptshop00 and instantlough2 --both located in Michigan) that look suspicious. Both only have about 40 transactions, all completed within the last few months, and both seem to have sold multiple copies of only a handful of different Lego sets, all at well under the list price.
  • Thank you again for the info, I'll take a look at both sellers and send all the information directly to eBay later tonight.

    Appreciate your help!

    Thor
  • ^^^^^ I think you have to be a little careful here. I have looked at that listing and can't see anything wrong. Yes the seller normaly sells Ninjago bits but and does not show the MO of recent "Dropshippers" on eBay.co.uk i.e. no multiple listings of high value current sets.

    While I'm all for dealing with these menace "Dropshippers" I would hate to tar honest seller with that brush.
  • edited January 2012
    @senatorblutarsky:
    Thanks for the ioffer page update; that's a new one to me; I'll try getting them shut down asap.

    I'll email Cabelas, Forever 21 and Fandago as well.
    With all due respect, isn't this like shoveling sh*t against the tide? I mean, once you get them "shut down asap" they are just going to pop up under a new username. There is simply too much easy money to be made here for them to ever stop. In fact the amount of fraudulent sellers is only going to increase as more and more people hop onto this bandwagon.

    I still say THE ONLY way this is going to stop is for TLG to require some sort of positive ID when the ship-to address does not match the bill-to address. Period, the end.
  • I think you have to be a little careful here. I have looked at that listing and can't see anything wrong. Yes the seller normaly sells Ninjago bits but and does not show the MO of recent "Dropshippers" on eBay.co.uk i.e. no multiple listings of high value current sets. While I'm all for dealing with these menace "Dropshippers" I would hate to tar honest seller with that brush.
    I agree, which is why I only said it's suspicious - and it is. Half a dozen bnsb lego sets, £5 delivery, stock photos only.

    But you're right we do need to be careful, I would have raised this one as suspicious too "Lego Star Wars Millennium Falcon (set 7965) BNIB" finishing Sunday lunch time and other bnsb sets, but given that the price is starting at £120 + £8 P&P when it can be picked up from amazon for £106 + free delivery, suggests it might just be someone trying to make a little margin. But then again, just shows it does pay to be suspicious of people selling using stock photos, paypal only - cos you can save yourself £25 going straight to the shop yourself!

  • ^ this is what worries me, As an online seller and an occasional seller on eBay, I usually list at RRP with free shipping and I usually use stock photos for two reasons, (1) because it's easier for me not having to take and manage my own photographs and (2) because they are instantly recognisable by the buyer. The only compromise I haven't tried is adding something like a banner to stock photos, for example, but I'm not sure if this would really make a difference.

    To all intents and purposes, I would look like a fraudulent seller when in fact nothing is further from the truth. I'm a registered limited company who pays tax on my sales (I wonder how many other individuals who buy to sell are being honest with HMRC?). My eBay ID is my company name and it shows I'm registered as a business, so I guess I have some obvious protection if people look.

    For the past few months, I've stuck to selling in my own online store (it's cheaper for me to sell that way!) and haven't listed anything on eBay because of this scam. I'm wondering whether it's worth calling it out to warn buyers when I do list items for sale. What do people here think?

  • edited January 2012
    ^ I'm sure we are talking about the same seller here. He also has 2 listings which have actual photos of the LEGO items. While I agree that £5 delivery is to cheap, it would be nearer £10 for the weight of a 7938 I would think this is just an over sight. As I said before take alook at his feedback and see what he has sold.

    Also lookinhg at the dropship sellers over Christmas, most had the same item discription and all featured DHL as the courier.

    As @Martin stated that he sells sets near RRP I also do the same & on the odd listing have used stock pics to speed up the listing However since all this dropship issue came up I have tried to photo every item to stand out from the other listings.
  • ^ Yes, the ninjago fits. But... what you have to remember is that the people criminals using stolen cards were using unwitting third parties to place the items on their ebay accounts for a percentage. The fact that all the ninjago sets had photos of the actual items just adds to that feeling of unease. To be selling small ninjago constantly and then suddenly have 12 bnsb lego sets costing 20 times as much as the other items makes me think they may have been duped. But thats not to say it couldn't be 100% legitimate.

    I think I'll actually contact the seller directly here, after all I suspect from all of this its those unwitting third parties that will have the biggest problems - by posting others items I'm sure they're massively in breech of Ebays Terms and Conditions. Could cause them massive problems with both ebay and paypal.
  • Deathstar $140.00 on ebay, he's only got 10 left............lol. ebayer:caonimamamamam
  • As @LegoFanTexas previously pointed out, the seller Adri2011 on Amazon is still selling Tower Bridge at $219 and I can not find any way to report him.

    My favorite comment under his reviews:
    "Arrived quickly, direct from the Lego warehouse, even included the free item Lego is shipping with all purchases over $75. Excellent experience with this seller. Would buy again without hesitation." ChrisF, January 14, 2012

    Really? and this did not seem suspicious to you in any way?
  • @kks and others, I sent Thor an email about another Amazon seller and he asked me if it was Adri2011, so they are aware.
  • I think Amazon is starting to take steps to stop this. Recently I have had to verify my shipping address when ordering. I use several different cards with variations of my name and if the name on the card does not match the name in the shipping address the order will not go through. This just started happening in the last week.
  • @pcirone - yes it is... Lego is a big enough company and unlike eBay, sells directly to Amazon. An executive at Lego should be able to pick up the phone and call an executive at Amazon and put a stop to this in 5 minutes...
  • Hi all,

    Regarding Amazon - Adri2011 has been on my radar. It's obviously a drop-shipper, I'm just waiting to confirim whether it's someone using stolen credit cards or if it's something else.

    If anyone you know has purchased from this person please contact me. I'd like to know what the "BILL TO" information said on the invoice in the packaging.

    Appreciate the heads up as always.

    -Thor
  • almost assuredly a dropship scam, if not an outright "won't every be mailed" scam.
  • LOL not a dropship scam at all. This one will ship a small item with tracking, obviously not Lego. At least the dropshippers bother to ship Lego lol.
  • Wow, 58 sold in less than a day. I love how he claims that his stock photos are his own, and that he "will report anyone copying the pictures above will be reported to eBay."
  • Please don't buy this. It seems like every couple weeks someone posts here with a ebay listing that is too good to be true. Then a couple days later they confirm it was a scam because the box came from LEGO, or just some other shady stuff. I suggest not using ebay for LEGO unless the item has been discontinued. That way you pretty much know your safe.
  • Just look at his feedback, multiple people buying things. Def looks dodgy to me.
  • and free shipping to boot!!! oh yea i'll take 20 of them! LOL
  • I was going to get more than one but unfortunately he doesn't combine shipping.
  • Unfortunately, I got sucked into it. The price and the feedback number was the factors. Luckily, ebay already removed the listing, and I am able to open a case right away. Hopefully, get my money back in a couple of weeks.
  • edited January 2012
    You should get it in a few days. Thats been my experience with removed listings.
  • I got sucked into the Death star too. I actually called EBay first because I was suspicious, ad they Verifed it as Legit!

    I bid, won, had the buyer send tracking, and found the auction promptly cancelled the next day by Ebay.

    Now I'm stuck in this horrid resolution process awaiting a letter with a probable Micro SD card that I will be forced to send back. The tracking even says its a letter, not that Paypal cares.

    Despite the fact this is an obvious multi-buyer scam, Paypal treats it no differently.

    Supposedly others have jumped through paypal's hoops and still He then find in sellers favor. Hoping to get refund back...

    Anyone dealt with this type of scam and gave advice on successful resolution?

    Thor, I sent you info as well including screenshots.

    (still can't believe someone bought 10!!! I reluctantly let myself buy one, only cuz I had just seen one built and was enticed... Boy do I regret that.)
  • so what do you do, if you got caught (5x) and one of the sellers replies with the text below; should I just go ahead and file a dispute with ebay? I still need to contact lego for the shipping labels



    Hello. Thank you for informing me. I'm just a re-seller using drop shipping company. I will check this immediately please excuse me for this! I will contact my suppliers on the moment. Please give me one day, you will receive full refund + 10$ compensation for these problems.

    Excuse me once again for this. I believe there's a proper explanation and I will ask my suppliers to give me one!

    Regards,
  • edited January 2012
    @Martin: Unfortunately stock photos are used by scammers A LOT , I'm guessing because they do not have a picture of the item (as they have no items), AND if they use someone else's photo on eBay the auction can be yanked if caught.
    So they use a 'stock' photo. The bottom line is if you cannot at least show you have the item, expect those to be dubious. That being said, this is why people have to be careful not to turn this into a witch hunt.
    The stock photo is that is not all someone should look at.
    The shipping address is another thing: Olive Branch MS (I believe). and if they are shipping via fed ex, they have a rather cryptic description (like they took the item description from LEGO's site as well), they only sell new sets that they can get from LEGO, PLUS they all sell their items for well under Retail price with free shipping.And sometimes they are crazy enough to say they are drop shipping if contacted
    It is all of these things that can point toward a scammer.
    If someone does not take athat into account then a witch hunt can ensue, but I am guessing LEGO and eBay have though of this already.
  • how about this one:

    Hello,
    In order to figure out what has happen with this transaction, I will need to contact my partner who manages purchases and shipment of the stock. I manage sales and listing over eBay strictly, and have no control over shipment nor stock. To investigate this issue please provide me the following information:
    Who informed you about a stolen credit card, and how does the informer have knowledge about this when there are thousands of listings of Lego sets on eBay. What do you mean when you state, ?the item may have been purchased?. Is this a fact or not? Where the item is currently? To help me better understand the situation please get back to me, and if anything wrong we will negotiate a full refund. Thanks.
  • @chuckis
    Deathstar $140.00 on ebay, he's only got 10 left............lol. ebayer:caonimamamamam
    Lol- caonimama means F your mother in Chinese. Now they are just throwing it our faces...
  • edited January 2012
    @snowtyger You could ask the guy for information about the partner, since apparently the guy you're talking to has "no control over shipment nor stock." Also, you might want to tell him simply that the shipment came directly from TLG and TLG does not distribute via drop-shippers. Hence, you know the sale is illegitimate.
  • Or how about telling him that you picked up the phone and called Lego and they simply told you it was purchased with a stolen credit card, that you contacted the "Bill To" address person and they know nothing about the transaction.
  • I'm exhausted; and I still need to contact Lego!
  • edited January 2012
    10188 Death Star on Ebay £121 to good to be true?

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/BRAND-NEW-LEGO-Star-Wars-Death-Star-10188-DeathStar-/250983665394?pt=UK_Construction_Toys_Kits&hash=item3a6fcacef2

    So I am new to collecting lego and have just found this on ebay. What do you guys think its seems to good to be true. The seller has more than 10 of these and sold 22 today buy the seems. There seems to be no feedback for a while either (although the old feedback is good). What do you people think?
  • edited January 2012
    Wouldn't touch it with a 600 ft bargepole. More than 10 available? Stock photo? Lego's catalogue description? For sale at 50% of RRP? Dodgy with a capital D in my opinion.

    Edit: you should read this thread http://www.bricksetforum.com/discussion/2607/ebay-fraud-announcement-from-lego for the warning signs to look out for on ebay purchases, and the bad experiences of people who have been suckered into these type of deals.

    Second edit: if it looks too good to be true, it usually is!
  • Haha yea thats what I'm thinking! I have saved seller and will checkback later to see how the feedback sounds!
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