Firewood fraud: Complaints to the SPVQ are increasing

The SPVQ has received 15 complaints about fraud in the sale of firewood on sites such as Marketplace since last June.

That number can only represent the tip of the iceberg, as people have come forward since the firewood fraud report was released last week The newspaper to report that they too had become victims.

“It will be difficult for many victims to get the money back because at the computer level […] It’s difficult to go back to the source,” said Sandra Dion, spokeswoman for the Service de Police de la Ville de Quebec (SPVQ).

lost money

A resident of Wendake, Olivier Samson, wanted to order seven cords of wood for him and his in-laws. Looking for a good price, he was persuaded by a salesman who asked for $95 per cable when the average market price is around $120.

“I contacted him via messenger. He asked for my shipping address and cell phone number in case he needed to contact me. In the end he asked me to transfer half of the order to guarantee the wood. The rest was due upon delivery. »

Mr. Samson transferred $370. According to the agreement, the seller was supposed to come last Thursday, but he never showed up.

“When I went back to view the conversation on Messenger, the ad was removed. […] I realized I had been betrayed. »

With the help of his cousin, he traced the IP address back to Morocco.

“I went to the police and made a statement. […] Since it is abroad, the policeman warned me that it would be even more difficult. I’ll have to mourn that, I think,” he said.

The scammers who stole Mr Samson did not use the name of an existing and reputable company to issue false invoices.

In the conversations he had, Mr. Samson thought he was doing business with a firewood producer from Saint-Henri-de-Lévis.

Wrong bills

Another Montreal victim wired $200 to have lumber delivered. He received a false bill from Tiles Martel, which has already strongly denounced these scammers.

The Quebec company does not sell lumber online. One lady also denounced a “very well done” fake sales site that issues fake invoices.

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