Don't get caught by caravan/horse float scam

POLICE are warning Fraser Coast residents about a scam targeting prospective caravan and horse float buyers.

Detective Superintendent Brian Hay of the Fraud and Cyber Crime Group said advertisements were placed in local newspapers with either a caravan or horse float for sale and the seller provided an email address and a telephone number, police said.

"Generally the advertised price is very attractive at almost half the market value," he said.

"Prospective buyers are forced to communicate via email after the number they are given in the ad is never answered."

The buyer generally finds out the seller is overseas during the email communication and explains this is due to a job transfer or similar situation.

Bank account details are provided to the buyer and they are told transport of the caravan or horse float will be done by a transport company following receipt of payment.

"As is generally seen in these scams, the money is paid and the caravan never arrives," Det Supt Hay said.

"Clearly this scam won't work if the buyer insists on seeing the caravan, rather than just an image sent via email and this is certainly one of the key elements of preventing this scam in the future.

"Always insist on viewing in person a purchase as big as this.

"With victims losing $15,000, it would certainly make sense."

For more information on how to avoid becoming a victim of fraud, visit www.police.qld.gov.au or www.scamwatch.gov.au

Anyone with information which could help with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24 hours a day.



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