Possible scam alert

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Joined
Dec 19, 2001
Messages
10,196
Location
Alaska, Idaho USA
I've got a WTB on the classifieds and got a text from a guy, that he had one for sale, but no real information. So I asked some questions and he sent a few pictures but I'm not computer literate enough to know if they are just pulled of the internet. I said I'd call him but he said he was out with family and texting was better. When he did quote a price it was half of what it should be. $500 on a $1000 gun. He asked if I had an FFL I used and I said I did and sent him a copy. He said he was an FFL holder 07. And sent a copy. The physical address was Connecticut but his mailing address was Florida. He's pressing me to send money on Zelle which I understand has no protection. His phone number has a New Mexico area code.

I googled his name and he scammed a guy on air gun nation.

When I originally saw the price I got excited ( too excited). But the old if it's too good to be true thing kicked in. His name on the FFL is Thomas Imperato. Just another heads up, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2005
Messages
4,539
Location
Lemont, PA, USA 16851
BPJ, Just FYI, I NEVER send a copy of my FFL to anyone unless I know it is a done deal. If a customer is buying a firearm and I need to send a copy, I tell the customer to send me the info (including the email) on the seller or the shipping FFL before I send them mine. If a customer is selling a firearm I tell the customer to have the receiving FFL or seller send me a copy of the FFL or their info (especially if it sounds fishy to me). I then tell the receiver that my FFL it will be with the firearm when I ship it.

Shady people can/will ask for an FFL and then may use it to illegally purchase firearms by photoshopping it to show different info on the FFL.

Nowadays a phone number isn't indicative of where they live since you can transfer phones numbers easily so you don't have to get a new number if you move, graduate from college, get a new job, etc.

BUT - physical address being CT and mailing is FL - HMMMM? (unless it is a big corporation with multiple FFL locations) And I don't know too many FFLs who request Zelle as a payment. Scammers like to use Zelle because it does not offer protection like a USPS Money Order, Credit Card, or other protected account.
 
Joined
Nov 5, 2007
Messages
9,938
Location
Dallas, TX
Ron's absolutely correct about the phone numbers. I've had a Seattle area code but haven't lived in Seattle for 17 years. In fact my daughter has never lived in Seattle but we got her a phone number from up there also.

When you get a new phone and completely new number, you can request any area code you want. Doesn't matter where you live.

Kind of funny really.
 
Joined
Jan 10, 2005
Messages
3,189
Location
Alexandria, LA USA
For what it's worth, I got burned by a different person who did all the things that we ask, including drivers license pictures of the guns with his information on a sticky note and the date. So there is no real protection without having a gut feeling and talking to the person directly And all the boxes are checked. I thought I had but it still didn't help in my case. If it smells and sounds fishy, then it probably is.
 

Tenbore

Blackhawk
Joined
Aug 21, 2009
Messages
518
Location
Oregon
"If you have the FFL or just the license number, you can verify its validity at:

FFLeZCheck 3.1.2 - Federal Firearms License Search

One of the few helpful things the ATF has done. If the info provided or printed on the FFL doesn't match the ATF's, then take a pass."



Unfortunately, it does not provide verification of 03 (C&R) FFL licenses like mine.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2005
Messages
4,539
Location
Lemont, PA, USA 16851
One can find very good gun deals on the internet, you just have to know what you might be getting into and how to mitigate the scam factor. I've been in the gun business for a long while as have many others and you get to the point where if your gut/brain says somethings just not right, it probably is a scam. There are lots of tips out there on what to watch for and what to ask a seller to do if you're just not sure. If they are honest, they will do what you ask if it is not outrageous. But, be advised, scammers are getting better all the time but you can still out wit them. Then expose them far and wide so others don't fall prey.
 
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