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Zoey, JD
Zoey, JD, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 27467
Experience:  18+ years of NYS litigation experience.
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While responding to an on-line ad for a boat for sale, I was

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While responding to an on-line ad for a boat for sale, I was contacted by a company called For them to deliver the boat I have to send them one half the purchase price via a MoneyGram, which comes out to $1890. Is this company legit or a fraud?
Hello Jacustomer,

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I can answer this question for you.

Hang onto your money. This is a fraud.

First of all, you should never never send payment by Western Union or MoneyGram to any stranger or company with whom you have never dealt. There's absolutely no buyer protection. Wire transfers like this are instanteous, irreversible and untraceable. That's why scammers always ask for them.

The WHOIS information for this website shows that this site just was registered and posted 5 days ago! You can see that for yourself by going to and running the web address to get to the WHOIS. Additionally the company is using a proxy server to hide its identity and has only registered this for a year, the least amount of time (and the most expensive and impractical) that one can register a domain for. All of these are very bad signs.

There is a very popuular scam going around, and this is how it works:

You see a very desirable boat online. It is way below its book value. The seller is typically very far away, maybe even out of your country. He won't let you come and inspect the boat, nor will he allow you to hire an agent in his part of the country to come see it or check it out on your behalf before you have to pay for it. Typically, he will say that he's in the military and about to be deployed, but whatever his excuse, there is no possible way you or your agent can come and inspect this boat before you have to pay for it.

But don't worry, he assures you. The boat is just great and you will be able to have several days to inspect it during which time you can send it back if it meets with your approval. Meanwhile, he tells you, your money will be held by eBay Protection's Program, Google Checkout, PayPal, or some so-called shipping and escrow company (in this case while you look it over. If you decide to get the boat he tells you that they will release your money to the seller. He may even "throw in" the cost of shipping and insurance, to sweeten the deal because he is in such a hurry to clinch this deal.

You'll get an email from from the so-called shipping/escrow agent, providing you with payment instructions. That will usually involve a wire transfer via MoneyGram or Western Union, which offers you no buyer protection. Then you sit back to wait for your boat to arrive. By the time you figure out that it's never going to show up, your "seller"and the "agent/shipper" have disappeared without a trace and your money along with him. You try to find them, but none of the information you got about either of them turns out to be true.

You can find an FBI warning about these scams by clicking on the link. (see link). It references a car but the scam is used for all vehicles.

If this sounds like your deal, then unfortunately, this is a scam. There is no boat. This company is no real shipper/escrow service and unless law enforcement can somehow round them up and bring them to justice you will never recover any money you send away.

Zoey, JD and other Consumer Protection Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I'm a little confused. I found the following response to a previously posted question.




Expert: FranL replied 23 days and 4 hours ago.


eConsignors Storehouse is a legitimate company. I never used it personally, but I know people that did and some of them are my clients. It's one of the best fraud-free services I've seen and whoever came up with the idea did a good job. However, there are a lot of legitimate services such as this one that are also being used by scammers, but you are obviously on the right track if you were pointed to You can also read their security page for tips on how to stay safe. Hope this helps."

Hi Russ,

That is a fraudulent listing. As you can see from the URL, it's not from JustAnswer. It's a copycat website that is using my photo to falsely vouch for a fraudulent business. Our legal department has taken this down 3 times already, and the people who post it make a variation in the name of the URL and change the name of the business and try it again.

I did not write anything positive about this particular business. I have shown you that eConsignors is only 5 days old. So I couldn't have known a thing about it 23 days ago as what you found said.

Thank you very, very much for letting me know that the scammers have done it again. They are located out of the country, most likely in Russia, and they are persistent. But they are lying. We are not allowed on JustAnswer to endorse any company, and I can assure you that I did not.

I'll be reporting it to the site's legal division again to their attention.

Zoey, JD and other Consumer Protection Law Specialists are ready to help you