Two more people have fallen victim to online car sale scams, prompting the police to issue a new warning to would-be buyers.
Both incidents occurred at the weekend.
In one of the incidents, a would-be buyer was relieved of $14,000 in Castries, and in the other, a man who went to a meeting in the north of the Island to buy a vehicle encountered some armed thugs who assaulted him and took his cash.
Police Inspector Shervon Matthieu of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) issued the following advice:
Purchasing a vehicle from an unknown online seller can be risky, as it can expose you to the possibility of fraud or other crimes. To reduce the risks involved in such a transaction, here are some safety tips to keep in mind:
Verify the seller’s identity and credentials: Before proceeding with any transaction, make sure that you know who you’re dealing with. Ask the seller for their name, address, and phone number, and verify that the information is accurate. Also, ask for their driver’s license and registration to confirm their identity.
Conduct a background check: Use online search engines or social media to learn more about the seller’s background, reputation, and history.
Inspect the vehicle thoroughly: If possible, inspect the vehicle in person before buying it. Check for any signs of damage, wear and tear, or other defects. You can also ask for a vehicle history report to see if the car has been in any accidents or has any outstanding liens.
Use a safe payment method: Avoid sending cash or wire transfers to unknown sellers. Instead, use a secure payment method like PayPal or a credit card, which offer protection against fraud and can help you recover your money if something goes wrong.
Meet in a public place: If you decide to meet the seller in person, choose a public place like a coffee shop or a mall. Don’t go alone and let someone know where you’re going and who you’re meeting.
Trust your instincts: If something feels off or too good to be true, it probably is. If you have any doubts or concerns about the seller or the transaction, trust your instincts and walk away.
Headline photo: Inspector Shervon Matthieu
This isn’t good advice. Any crafty criminal will be able to thwart your attempts to authenticate who they are. It’s even laughable. As far as I know PayPal accounts that are opened with a St. Lucian bank account cannot receive payments, so that’s one piece of janky advice. Second, how will you pay a private seller via credit card? Third, transacting at a mall or a coffee shop? Which coffee shop? Caribbean Cinemas? The place where a security guard was shot? A mall may sound like a good idea but criminals are emboldened to the point that committing robbery in broad day light will probably not stop them. Who writes these things? lol.. It’s laughable. Your best bet would be a bank (cashiers) check since it takes time to clear and would have an account holders name attached to it. See how easy was that? Lord have mercy on us if these are the people we are counting on to come up with ideas.
Ok these safety tips look like from Google for the United States give us some for us Lucian’s in saint lucia.
Better yet translate it Lucian style(•‿•)
Good one Alex Webb and Jah guide. What about doing the transaction at a Police Station?
Alex Webb so why didn’t you come and sensitize persons on your own. This officer continues to preach to lucians about crime safety and persons like always coming with your negative comments. You are so anti police. What have you given back to the country instead other than negative comments. Go sit on a pole
@alex spider webb …good…so get slu times to publish ur ideas
You can recieve monies with PayPal accounts here. You just have to set it up.
I thought he would have said conduct the transaction at the premises of a police station.
In the presence of an officer.
Yes i agree…do the transactions at a police station.
When will my people learn ?
If you think the police (as a totality) in St. Lucia are competent and trying their best you have to be fooling yourself. There are some good ones, I know them personally but there are lots of power tripping, incompetent, corrupt ones. As for those who said I’m always being negative, my apologies but I don’t need to be providing positive feedback as a citizen. Our jobs is to hold those in rank to account, from the meagre paper pushing civil servant to the PM. Not because I can’t do means I’m not allowed to not say. I may not be-able to build a bridge but I can tell when it’s not a good one. This is one of the issues in this country it’s a sinking ship yet we talk about being more positive which at best means the commenter is being pollyannish and at worst (which I suspect is more likely) being a party loyalist.
Anonymous, you have posted the best comment. How many times must St. Lucians be advised against doing this type of transaction?
Alex Webb ur on point to the max and it’s said fools and their money always part das money is made to be invested wisely for proper survival and most people spend their whole lives on a merry go round repeating the same dumb stupid mistakes with hard earned finances
@Eyes on:- you sure got this one right; thank you.
Some people think that they can get a Lexus with bicycle money
The police should charge the victims.
After so many instances of folk getting hurt, robbed and even killed with these transactions. Why would anyone in their right mind want to engage in this ??????- go to the dealership and conduct legal and safer transactions.