The Met's Most Wanted

An eBay seller was surprised to receive an email from the Metropolitan Police placing him in their top 10 most wanted list when, suspecting a deception was afoot, he did not send out items brought from him on the auction site. Surprise soon turned to laughter and by the time he had finished reading the message it had become clear that the fraudsters were not going to give up easy. The scam, which is now commonly attempted on the site, targets new sellers of high value electronic goods, usually mobile phones. Fraudsters make an offer attached with a sub-story requesting the product be sent to a friend or relative in Nigeria. The story is meant to trick the seller into believing the buyer does not actually live in Nigeria, a country notoriously linked with fraud. They persuade the seller to send the goods on receipt of a fake payment confirmation email from Paypal, Nochex, Western Union or other payment services. The seller sends the item but the promised payment never materialises. Below is a transcript of the original email (spelling mistakes 'n' all... enjoy!): From: metropolitan police Date: May 25, 2006 12:53 PM Subject: WARNING..................Metropolitian Police ..............(uk) To: xxxx@gmail This is to inform you Mr XXXX that we have received a complaint in conjuction with PayPal about a payment made for an item bought from you recently, We received the complaint that the payment has since been approved and that you haven't taken the neccessary step which you are suppose to take in other for the payment to be transferred to you. We are informed that you are suppose to make the shippment of the item to the buyer and send the tracking number to the payment company(PayPal) for shippment verification which is secure for interest of both the seller and the buyer from been scammed. All your information has been forwarded to us and we have already contacted the nearest Metropolitian Police office nearer to your address about your case and they will immediately start the investigation.They may come to your home for more information about what happened and they may also require you to follow them to the station for more query.We have also forwarded your full contact information to the IFCC {Mr XXXX, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire United Kingdom} which you sent to the buyer for the payment to Internet Fraud Complaint Center(IFCC) about this case. According to (Section 1001, Title 18, U.K. Code) of the criminal law quote,which says that and i quote "Unshipped paid merchandise must be sent to a six month Imprisonment". So we implore you to go and make the shippment immediately and send the tracking number to the payment company(PayPal) which is safe and secure for making and receiving payment worldwide.We are assuring you that you are 100% safe with the payment and we will want you to go and make the shipment.Make sure you send the copy of the Royalmail tracking number to us immediately the shippment is made in other for us to cancel the complaint leveled on you. Here is the shipping infomation which you are to ship the item to, MR IBAJESOMO UNIVERSITY OF LAGOS DEPARMENT OF PHILOSOPHY AKOKA YABA LAGOS 23401 NIGERIA Note:88 If the shippment is not made in the next 72hrs of this message to you,we will immediately order your case permanent for proper investigation and immediately forward your full contact address to the press for publish.You are already among the Metropolitian Police most wanted Fugitives of this week for quick investigation and execution.But the only solution to remove you from the 10 most wanted fugitives is to follow the steps given to you and we assure you that you wont have any regret in making the shippment. We hope to hear from you immediately you see this message for quick processing of your case or you will be immediately be prosecuted.We thank you for your cooperation Thanks The Metropolitian Police can be contacted twenty-four hours a day, every day. Here's how: 105 Reid Promenade, Joondalup, 6027 United Kingdom MOTTO The Metropolitian Police motto is "Fidelity, Bravery, and Integrity."