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

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Comments

  • edited February 2012
    I guess what with vacations and an anti-fraud department with a staff of 1 its hard to do much.
    I believe those committing credit card fraud should do hard time; not have their hands spanked. In my case; however, it appears that the Chinese may be involved (a Chinese seller blaming somebody in China).

    It really bothers me that Amazon and eBay (and Lego?) don't listen and figure out a way to manage this (the cynic in me wonders if they really want to). As hard as it would be on their businesses, they should call back to the cardholders on suspect orders to validate the orders. The alternative is that people who legitimately want to purchase their product are put at risk for being complicit in credit card fraud, all in the name of purchasing legos. Who wants that? Short-term gain, long-term loss for these companies as people realize some purchases may be illegitimate.
  • I think if you are buying any newer sets online from private sellers @ 15% or more below retail you are asking for trouble. jmho
  • I think if you are buying any newer sets online from private sellers @ 15% or more below retail you are asking for trouble. jmho
    I agree. The prices I paid to the problem sellers were less than 10% below RRP in most cases. To an earlier point, one should look at the number of feedbacks left for a given seller to make sure they've been around awhile and didn't just popup overnight.
  • edited February 2012
    I agree. The biggest discount on the ones I got stung on was 15%. I did not check thier feedback to see how long they were around. I do now! That was about 2 years ago.
    Now I look for all the signs mentioned here. I have not been burned since.

    By the way. Love your Lego room! :-)
  • By the way. Love your Lego room! :-)
    Thanks... The drywall is scheduled to go in tomorrow, so I should have more images posted to that thread tomorrow evening or Tuesday.
  • edited February 2012
    Hello everyone,

    I'd like to quickly introduce myself on here and will post on a few other forums here to notify you of my contact information for fraud related Lego sales. My name is Thor Magnussen and I now work for Lego; I'm here to help combat the fraudulent sales on sites like ebay, ecrater and this site as well.

    If any of you have information related to fraudulent sellers please contact me via email at Thor.Magnussen@lego.com

    Thank you,

    Thor Magnussen
    What are you talking about??? How is selling a Lego set fraud? Are you trying to say that it's people creating their own fake Lego bricks and then making Lego set knock offs? You really weren't very specific one this whole Lego fraud thing, so I don't know exactly what it is you are getting at, or what it is that you think is fraud. If you just don't like people selling Lego sets on eBay, for whatever reason, well, I'm sorry. If a person buys a Lego set, and then decides they want to sell it, Lego has already made their money when the Lego set seller bought the Lego set. Not only that, after a Lego set is sold to someone, then that specific boxed set of Legos no longer belongs to Lego, it belongs to the customer. But like I said, I don't know what it is that Lego should be upset about. Perhaps you could clue me in. =D

    Removed Signature Block:YC 2/13/12
  • edited February 2012
    ^ If you took the time to read the entirety of this thread (and other, similar ones), you would find many specific examples of what we are talking about. I believe it is abundantly obvious we are not discussing reselling in general or Lego imitations.
  • @misato - if that was a joke it might have been funny, unfortunately it was serious.....get your coat....
  • edited February 2012
    I did email Thor and here's my response:

    I will be on vacation starting Thursday June 16, returning Tuesday June 28th. During this time I will be checking/responding to email and voicemail periodically.

    Thank you,

    Thor Magnussen

    June?? Anyone know if he is on vacation, and wrote the wrong month by mistake?

    Edit: Yeah, it looks like it. Man probably needs a rest after wrangling with ebay, paypal, ecrater, etc.
  • ^ If you took the time to read the entirety of this thread (and other, similar ones), you would find many specific examples of what we are talking about. I believe it is abundantly obvious we are not discussing reselling in general or Lego imitations.
    Okay, my bad.
    You are right. I didn't read every posting. I read the originator's post, and he wasn't very clear or specific, and so I wasn't for sure anybody else would know what this was about either.

    I guess that's kind of the bad thing about blogs and forums. You can either read every reply to make sure you are right on everything, and spend the whole day at the screen (which some people don't mind doing, I know), or you can read what you think you need to read and just hope your question hasn't already been answered a dozen times already. =D

    But like I said, my mistake, so sorry about that.
  • Oh, and also, the messages I did read seemed to be about auction sellers just not delivering what was paid for. I don't know what the term for that would be, but I would think it would be more like just out and out theft, instead of just fraud ( as if there is anything just about fraud, but you know what I mean. =D ).
  • edited February 2012
    You are right. I didn't read every posting. I read the originator's post, and he wasn't very clear or specific, and so I wasn't for sure anybody else would know what this was about either.
    Thank you in advance for your help here. Why don't you go back and read the months' worth of posts in this thread and then let us know what it's all about. There's no rush, we'll wait.
  • ^ Or just the first half dozen. Even the first post says - 'Ebay Drop Shipping from Lego'

    D'oh.
  • What do you guys make of this...

    "LEGO (Set 7965) STAR WARS Millennium Falcon™ (BNIB)" on auction currently £60. Easy to search and find.

    Same seller has loads of BNIP current sets starting at very low prices. But they're registered as a business seller and been around since march 2002. Some of the pictures don't look like stock which is in their favour but you wonder where the stock is coming from that they can risk such low starting prices. Friends Cafe for example, starting at 99p and the cheapest I've seen that is £20 from amazon. Also no reduction on postage costs if you buy more than 1 item always raises a few concerns for me to.
  • edited February 2012
    Could be legit, I've got falcons l picked up for £63. The sale price is relative to what the buyer paid for stock, not the RRP
  • Yep, Im just not sure about this one. The MF started at 99p also, but then they'll know it will get up high anyway. Things like the cafe corner are odder to me. Like I say, £20 is the cheapest yet, once you've paid ebay/paypal charges they're not going to make money on that sale no matter how successful the auction is? Something just doesn't add up to me.
  • Seller looks legit to me, lots of recent feedback. Could be something as simple as unwanted presents/cheap stock buyout from a toyshop that's gone under, etc. Maybe seller taking a few risks auctioning at low starts but it generates a lot more interest - gets a lot of watchers who may make late impulse bids.
  • Friends Cafe for example, starting at 99p and the cheapest I've seen that is £20 from amazon. Also no reduction on postage costs if you buy more than 1 item always raises a few concerns for me to.
    I frequently start my auctions on eBay for $0.95 USD with no reserve and trust the market to establish the right price. It isn't something I am always comfortable with, especially if I'm trying to resell something for a profit, but I would say over half my sales run that way. Once people start bidding on a "cheap" item they get emotionally invested in your sale and tend to stick with it.

  • ^ There is a lot of truth to that...

    Me? When I'm bidding on an auction, I know that I should probably "snipe" at the end, but I can't be bothered...

    So I place the highest bid I want, then if I win it, great, if not, oh well.

    I sometimes have gotten great deals that way, bidding early and low and just forgetting about it, then poof, I win the auction! :)
  • ^^ true and for a heavily discounted set it might make sense. But cafe can be got for £30 inc free delivery from amazon. Even if these were sourced for £20 and reach £30 (which with postage is £35 and requires a very stupid buyer) that's really no profit at all.
  • edited February 2012
    I just had a 10231 Space Shuttle delivered that I had gotten on eBay. Sometimes I snag good deals, and I simply thought this was one of them. I got it for $75 + $10 shipping. So, $85 for something that retails for $99. I checked the seller's feedback before I bid, and although they only had at rating of 31 it was all positive and went back to Dec '11.

    As soon as I saw the box I was curious because it looked like a S@H box. When I opened it I found an invoice for $99, plus sales tax and shipping for a total of $121.20! Also, the seller's state is listed as GA, but state on the Sold To address is NC.

    Something seems to be unethical. Does anyone know what just happened? Was it drop shipped and paid for using a stolen CC? What should I do?
  • edited February 2012
    Drop shipped using stolen CC....no doubt.
  • call LEGO and tell them what happened, otherwise they'll blacklist you. I would also get Ebay and Paypal involved as well. You'll want to file a PayPal claim soon so you can get your money back, and LEGO will have you return the set to them.

    see the link for more information.

  • Thanks @tk79 @Farmer_John @dougts

    Called LEGO and eBay. LEGO confirmed the purchase was made with a stolen CC and want me to return the item. Called eBay, at first the person seemed a bit clueless, but put me on hold. I guess someone explained to her what might be going on. When she returned she told me that if a stolen CC was used I was in possession of stolen msde. No joke! Really? :-) She told me NOT to ship it back to LEGO. :-) At least, not yet. eBay is going to do their own investigation and get back with me. Interestingly, the eBay person told me to contact the seller and tell them that a stolen CC was used. Don't quite understand that. I have since checked the seller's feedback and the last entry shows them not sending the buyer their stuff. So, the seller's gig may soon be up. Strange that they were able to sell on eBay for months. I guess most people don't do as I have done. They're just happy to have their 'bargain' LEGO set?
  • can somebody explain why we don't seem to ever get firm action and arrests here? can't people be tracked using urls etc?
  • can somebody explain why we don't seem to ever get firm action and arrests here? can't people be tracked using urls etc?
    It generally takes 30 days to get a warrant on an IP address. That is all well and good if the person is using a static IP address. They are likely not. They are also likely not selling from their home address.

  • ok, didn't realise authorities needed warrants for IP addresses. I just think we need some action here, or the drop shipping, fraudulent UCS auctions etc are just going to continue.
  • Lego need to tighten up at their end. Its not a coincidence that they are being targeted. Ask yourself why the scammers use s@h not amazon (which would make the scam more money) to deliver using the stolen cc's. Lego could fix this over night if they wanted to.
  • New seller selling 10231 Shuttle Expedition for $91.99 w/ free shipping. Limit 1 per household. Definitely a dropshipper.
    Bought an MMV the other day for $80 w/ free shipping, was too excited and bought it Then realized the listing said factory shipped. I told the seller to refund my money, and told him he was more than likely involved in something illegal. Seller quickly refunded my money, and I never heard back from them.
  • can somebody explain why we don't seem to ever get firm action and arrests here? can't people be tracked using urls etc?
    It is white collar crime...

    You can steal a lot of money using a computer before you really get in legal trouble...

    If you use a knife or a gun to steal $50, you'll have a dozen cops throwing you to the pavement...

    That is just how our civilization works... Go figure...
  • This had me thinking... I had ordered a Imperial Flagship back in 2010 from an auction that I think started as at 0.99, I eventually won it for around $170 with free shipping. I began wondering if maybe it was a drop shipper and that I hadn't realized because I never order online, and last time I did I had it sent to my parents address. I was glad to find I could look at my archived purchase history on ebay and see the seller is still in business with only 1 Neutral feedback. Good to know I'm not blacklisted by LEGO haha.
  • The guy I mentioned above is still going with more stock added almost every day. He's either a dropshipper or a reseller happy to make a tiny margin (or no margin?). The two I was watching ended like this:

    LEGO (Set 8089) STAR WARS Hoth Wampa Cave (BNIB) - £18 + £4.99 delivery
    LEGO (Set 2507) Ninjago – Fire Temple (BNIB) - £37.55 + £13.39 delivery

    Those prices may be in line with what you can get it for, but after ebay and paypal charges theres going to be no profit, and the bigger question is why not hold on to the sets..

    The £13.39 delivery certainly doesn't seem like the MO of a drop shipper but it doesn't make much sense to me.
  • Not really sure where to mention this, but I buy Lego sets on ebay from time to time and found that many people were selling pdfs of Lego Instruction manuals. This made me mad that people were paying several dollars up to $15 for something that they can get most often for free. So I created a few posts for various instructions and priced it at .01 cent and stated first thing in the description to "DO NOT PAY ME. THIS IS FREE!" I had complained to ebay but to no avail. So my son has a 5th grade math graphing project and he is collecting data on which one 'sells' the most (though we accept no money and ALWAYS refund when people do send. 01cent). It's a backwards way of going about it, but the buyers are no longer getting ripped off.
  • ^^ I hardly ever make a good profit off my lego and star wars stuff i sell on ebay it just depends on demand, i sold 50 1970'2 star wars comics bought for £50 a few years a go sold them on ebay for £4.50, so it all depends on who wants it. listing it at 99p is always a good way to get more people interested as well. most sellers recomend it as a way to start it off.
  • It looks like there are not as many drop-shippers on eBay, now. I've bought a Fire Brigade from a drop-shipper last year, and LEGO didn't add me to their blacklist. Anyone know why?
  • It might be that the credit card used to pay for the set was not reported as stolen.
  • All,

    Thank you for all of the emails notifying us of various eBay/Amazon sellers.

    Going forward please send all of your questions/notifications of possible fraud to LossPrevention@LEGO.com

    It's easier to have all questions/notifications sent to one inbox rather than having to check the various forums every week.

    I appreciate your cooperation.

    Thank you,

    Thor

  • An update to the entry I made on 2/16, above.

    I submitted a buyer protection claim (or whatever it's called) on eBay. I stated that the item I got was not as advertised, because it was stolen. I then submitted a negative feedback on the seller which read 'BEWARE-Items paid for w/ stolen CC & shipped from LEGO-must be returned to LEGO!' My thinking is that selling stolen goods should automatically get negative feedback, regardless of the later outcome. Not sure what else could be worse than that, given it is a clear violation of eBay rules and laws. Although I did feel bad in doing so. I have only given negative feedback 3 times in my 10+ years on eBay. But, I felt it was my duty to try and warn other buyers. Although I think the majority don't care, as long as they get a great deal. Sad, if I'm right. Also, I am concerned the buyer will retaliate in some way, because usually that happens. Sellers do NOT want any negative feedback. But, you know... When it is all said and done I just want to do the right things and try to stop this individual.

    Sorry, off on a bit of a tangent. The next day the seller sent me a PayPal refund. No email, no nothing. I'm thinking that was done to try and keep me quiet, so to speak. I'm thinking people that are using stolen CC's don't want attention drawn to them. Now, do I regret giving him negative feedback? Not really. I think out of principle the negative feedback was appropriate. Will there be repercussions? We'll see.
  • This, "warin75delo" person on Ebay is selling items on Ebay with stolen ccs. It's not just "dropshipping." I have just gotten off the phone with the victim that this seller stole from. Also, the name registered on that account is the name of someone who's been dead for 12 years! It's public record in Georgia! Buyers need to beware! If it's too good to be true, then it is!
  • Hi, I bought a new lego set on ebay to be a birthday present for a family member.I thought the auction looked normal, it was basically retail price,they had positive feedback and the shipping listed California.A family member told me the lego set arrived straight from lego.
    I am a small lego collector(personal use) and had honestly never heard of anything like this before.I am shocked by this becuase I don't see any way to completely avoid this on Ebay, unless you just never buy any lego sets that are still being sold on Lego.com.
    Can you guys please give me advice on what I do now?
    Who do I contact the seller, paypal, ebay, lego?
    Thanks
  • edited February 2012
    All of the above. You will need all of the auction info and the info off of the packing slip. The packing slip will have a different sold to name then the sells if it is a scam. Good Luck

    Also email thor860@Lego.com. See 4 post up
  • Thor posted this:

    Going forward please send all of your questions/notifications of possible fraud to LossPrevention@LEGO.com

    You might also want to call LEGO directly (as you'll get a case number, or wait from the email you might get one there too). File a 'item not received' from ebay, after you have your case #. document to ebay the case#, the 'item not sent from ebay seller, but from Lego directly (after verifying that the person you bought from (check paypal) is not the same person who is listed in the 'bill to' address (for example, I had a California scammer, items were billed to people back east).)
    It can be a long, not so fun process. Good luck!

  • can somebody explain why we don't seem to ever get firm action and arrests here? can't people be tracked using urls etc?


    It is white collar crime...

    You can steal a lot of money using a computer before you really get in legal trouble...

    If you use a knife or a gun to steal $50, you'll have a dozen cops throwing you to the pavement...

    That is just how our civilization works... Go figure...
    Never thought if it that way before LFT but darn if that is not right (and a bit sad actually)
  • We have reported this individual to Lego directly. Also reported it to Ebay, although, they are not really motivated since they can collect Final Value fees, and fees for Paypal payments. Don't know who this Thor is. I can't trust who he says he is. He could be anyone as far as I know. The key for us is, that the box came directly from Lego with someone else as the purchaser. Definitely a red flag. I will be on the look-out, because many of us are simply AFOL, and just want Legos at a good price, but we have to do our due-diligence.
  • edited February 2012
    @Informedbuyer

    What do you mean you don't know who Thor is or state that you can't trust him. I'm sure he's just "anyone" - his email address is Thor.Magnussen@lego.com. I wouldn't have thought it was too easy for someone TLG didn't trust to obtain a lego.com email address.
  • edited February 2012
    @informedbuyer: people queried this when Thor first posted (natural sceptism kicking in) but:
    Thor is legit, his IP address is in Hartford, CT, not far from Enfield.
    i.e. where Lego have their US offices.
  • I contacted LossPrevention@LEGO.com on 2/24. Haven't gotten a response yet.
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