Buyer Beware

I was reading on the agplaythings proboards about a troubling new scam affecting American Girl and eBay.  An individual reported purchasing a “Buy it Now” item “Brand New in Box” for less than the item currently sells for from American Girl.  In this case it was Grace’s Pastry Cart being sold for $120 instead of the regular price of $150 or so.

The innocent person received the item, directly mailed from American Girl, but the purchaser’s name on the invoice was not hers.  Furthermore, the price on the invoice was the regular AG price plus added shipping.  Apparently, some criminals take a stolen credit card, buy something and ship it to an eBay customer (as you would if you were sending a gift), and the customer is then essentially paying a criminal for stolen goods.  The thief just made $120.00 and the customer now is sitting with an item bought with a stolen credit card. Scary stuff!  Apparently this is also happening with Lego merchandise.

It’s extra confusing because occasionally you do see items on eBay that are legitimately selling below the price on the American Girl website.  We have seen overstock items at Wilmot or the Oshkosh outlet at prices different than the AG website.  Usually this is clothing or returned items, not large ticket items.

I don’t use eBay very much – has anyone seen items listed like this recently?  If you want to read more, search on American Girl drop ship scam.

 

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14 thoughts on “Buyer Beware

      1. Flo

        I wonder if you paid by Paypal and complained if they would take the money back out of the scammers account? It also makes me wonder about some of these people selling brand new items for more than the price listed, on items still available from AG. Makes me glad that most of what I buy on Ebay is older items or from sellers who have been in business for a while. I’m super picky about who I buy from, but I do know that some people get too caught up in the emotional aspect of the auction atmosphere.

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      2. Jen Post author

        Yeah, you would think a long sales history would be a good clue to a safe transaction. Apparently this was a lot of 10 available, so that seems a little fishy for something still available from AG. You and I might question this, but if I were looking for Star Wars Lego I would have no idea what is current or not, so I can see how a regular person could be tricked.
        Couldn’t tell you when I bought on eBay last. For a while I picked up issues of Victoria magazines I didn’t have (when the magazine was in its glory days). Still have them and read them 💗💗

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  1. Flo

    I went into Ebay and found what I think is the original listing. This gets really scary because this person had perfect feedback from 230 people for various different things (not just AG), all sold as brand new, in multiples. Interestingly enough, there is nothing listed now for sale by this seller. I’d hate to be someone who bought something off this person, I suspect there may be an investigation pending. I wonder what will happen to those who did buy, will they be charged with receiving stolen goods?

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    1. Jen Post author

      I suppose some people might not even notice somet hung was wrong, unless they looked at the invoice. I’m a receipt freak, but lots of people never bother.

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      1. Flo

        The one thing that they sold a ton of they probably made $20 on each one, but other things just $5 – $10. It would have depended on who their retail “source” was. What I found interesting is that they would sell a whole bunch of the same item, then would change to something else, totally unrelated. Book sets & household appliances seemed to be the most popular. The AG stuff was the most recent, and thanks to that eagle eyed person its probably (hopefully) the last. I’m sure though there are others doing the same. It does really make me wonder about some of these “new in box” Grace dolls and other AG stuff that is still on the website though.

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