Richmond RCMP warn of fake bank drafts after 3 scammed out of $50K in goods over one week

The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police "E" Division Headquarters, in Surrey, B.C., on Friday April 13, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Mounties are warning the public after three people lost tens of thousands of dollars in goods due to scams involving fraudulent bank drafts in Richmond over the past week.

Richmond RCMP said the first two reports of the alleged scam took place on Dec. 8, but were reported on Tuesday, when the victims learned the bank drafts were fake.

The first victim told police that she was given a bank draft as payment for a purse she was selling online. When she tried cashing it, the bank advised her that it was fraudulent.

A second victim had the same fate when he tried to cash in a bank draft given to him after selling a diamond ring online, Mounties said.

The third alleged fraud occurred on Monday and was reported on Thursday, when that victim had the same realization after trying to cash in a bank draft she received from selling a purse online.

“Between the three victims, over $50,000 in goods was lost,” Cpl. Adriana O’Malley said in a news release Friday, adding that there’s reason to believe all three incidents are linked. “We don’t want to see anyone else fall prey to this type of fraud, which is why we are issuing this public warning.”

Mounties provided the following tips to help prevent people from falling victim to this scam. They suggest:

  •  Confirming the authenticity of the bank draft by contacting the issuing financial institution before completing the transaction;
  •  Meeting the buyer at a legitimate financial institution and observe the bank draft being ordered;
  •  Ensuring the draft has cleared and has been confirmed prior to releasing the item to the buyer.

Anyone with information on these scams is asked to call Richmond RCMP at 604-278-1212. Those who wish to remain anonymous can make a tip through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Source: CTV News