Saturday, August 13, 2022

Police Warn Citizens After Bandits Attack Motorist Duped In Car Sale Scam

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Saint Lucia police have warned citizens to beware of internet car sales scams in which criminals target unwary individuals.

The criminals offer vehicles for sale, invite buyers to a rendezvous to obtain the item, and have held up and robbed the unfortunate victims in several instances.

In one of the latest examples, armed bandits attacked a motorist this week when the man went to meet them at Morne Fortune to complete a vehicle sale in response to their invitation.

The man, who sustained minor injuries, managed to drive off  in his black Subaru but collided with another vehicle in his haste to get away while the bandits escaped into nearby bushes.

Officer stands guard near the black Subaru after it collided with another vehicle and ran off the road
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A passing police patrol later went in pursuit of the trio.

Appearing on the DBS Television programme Newsmaker Live on Wednesday, Sergeant Shervon Matthieu observed many ‘red flags’ associated with the social media vehicle scams.

By way of example, he observed that the scammers use aliases.

“Why don’t you have a legitimate name? You go onto the page – no photos, only four photos of a motor vehicle. You start talking to the person, the first thing is : ‘Hey, can you send me the documents for the vehicle?’. Do your due diligence first,” Matthieu advised.

“What is your name? Where are you from? What is your contact number? Can I get a copy of the insurance documents for that vehicle? You take it and you contact the financial institutions : ‘Good day Bank of Saint Lucia. Does John Brown have a loan for a 2015 Mercedes Benz or whatever?”

He also spoke of the need to inform the potential seller of the need for a mechanic to examine the vehicle for sale before applying for a bank loan to buy it.

“Sometimes when I speak about some of these issues I get upset because grown men are doing these things,” Matthieu declared regarding people who allow the criminals to prey on them.

“You leave the South of the Island. You see a vehicle for sale for $13,000. You come up to the North of the Island. You have not seen the vehicle, you have not driven it. The person you are buying the vehicle from is there waiting. Where is the vehicle? You give the person your $13,000 and then you want to run to the police? You have not seen the vehicle!” He observed.

According to Matthieu, investigating reports relating to internet scams puts additional pressure on the police.

“We have to work wonders for you to get your $13,000. But it was your fault,” Matthieu stated, adding that people need to be more responsible.

Matthieu disclosed that the criminals are becoming more brazen and using firearms because they know their victims are coming with money to buy the vehicles offered for sale.

“A transmission is about $3,000, $4000. You will see a transmission for $1,000. You need the transmission, so you will come with $1,000. ‘Meet me near the Daren Sammy Cricket stadium.’ Really? Why not at a garage, why not….. at the police station?” He asked.

Headline photo: Sergeant Shervon Matthieu

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Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
Our Editorial Staff at St. Lucia Times is a team publishing news and other articles to over 200,000 regular monthly readers in Saint Lucia and in over 150 other countries worldwide.

9 COMMENTS

  1. you see the same guy the police shot and killed barre st joseph ? he and some of the guys in that same area that do these things constantly they need to get rid of the rest of them

  2. I am listening to so many of you blaming the victim. I will just assume, all of you are below the age of 35 because you seem to know better than everyone.

    Still today many do not have social media and just like me, relied on an individual with facebook to provide me with the particulars when they came across such a post. Fortunately in my case, I tend to naturally not trust automatically, plus having being a current vehicle owner I was aware of what needed to be done and presented before hand. Therefore I knew to not waste my time.

    This victim however, was either too trusting. Does not mean he was stupid. Maybe he has never been burnt before, maybe he too is quite young and the vehicle he drove probably wasnt even his. We need to stop assuming people are supposed to know everything. Some people are quite slow and “live under rocks”, but does not mean they are stupid. They are just naive/ ignorant to facts.

  3. officer you blaming d man like u dnt know these things happen in slu….ppl buy things all the time from facebook and meet people and dnt try it yet…so i have to ask for the receipt of a phone from the seller if i see it on facebook?? the man was just unfortunate but lucky that day….continue to educate the public regularly and help wen url can…thats the job unfortunately you big buff vehicle driving bicycle riding party goin police men does do

    • Smh…. would you give a man 13k for a vehicle you have not seen or driven.. so many times the officers educate people on these things. Stop being a donkey

  4. The Police Should Refer him to a Lawyer the Jackass.He Dont Watch news nor Read News over the Internet.

  5. thats wha u call someone with Dumb Money, a sucker .. a victim of their own stupidity lost ur money n blast ur ride lol damn .. lol

    • Most of these guys know there is only one reason why car parts can be so cheap and that’s because the person selling it to you stole it from someone. A lot of these guys have no issue buying from criminals because it is cheaper, but when the criminals end up robbing you instead then it’s a problem. If it’s too good to be true then it’s not true

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