Watch Out For This Fake Car Buyer Scam

A recent news article reported that a man who advertised his VW Golf was hijacked by two men who posed as potential car buyers. The Daily News interviewed that the 31-year-old man from Chatsworth (who did not want to be identified), after he placed an advert on one of our competitor’s websites a week ago.

The man received a call from a buyer interested in purchasing his car and they arranged to meet. The potential buyer arrived with another man, supposedly his mechanic. They asked to take the car for a test drive and he accompanied them. Soon after driving off, the man posing as the buyer pulled out a gun and ordered him onto the passenger seat. The seller said he was terrified, but the hijackers reassured him, saying they wouldn’t hurt him. They robbed him of his wallet and cellphone and dropped him off, driving away with the stolen car. Police spokesperson Captain Thulani Zwane said no arrests had been made and the car had not been recovered. He added that while cases like this are rare, people should always exercise caution.

The Junk Mail team makes safety and security a priority for all its buyers and sellers. We know that selling your car privately is sometimes better than trading-in your vehicle. That is why Junk Mail gives you the option to place a Free Ad to make this sale possible.

Always remember that when you are selling stuff online it is safest to go with your gut. If the deal sounds suspicious know that you have the right to walk away until you find a buyer that is willing to trade on your terms.

If you are selling ANY item using Junk Mail, please read the below Safety Tips for Sellers:

Helpful Safety Tips for Sellers:

  • Take a friend with you when meeting a prospective buyer – there is always safety in numbers.
  • Leave your valuables at home when meeting with a prospective buyer.
  • Meet in a public place or somewhere that you feel comfortable with such as a police station or shopping mall. Try to avoid meeting at your house as you don’t want strangers knowing where you live.
  • Don’t drive into an area that is notorious for being a dangerous or has a reputation of being a dodgy area.
  • Don’t drive ridiculous distances to accommodate a potential buyer. They must meet you at your prescribed safe zone.
  • Don’t load up mobile airtime for a potential buyer.
  • Know the potential buyer – have a name, telephone number, place of work and the contact details at hand and verify these details.
  • Cash should be your preferred method of trade. Accepting goods such as jewelry, investment opportunities or stocks as an alternative for cash is never a good idea.
  • Hand over the item being purchased only when you have the full selling price in hand, small deposits, receipts or promises of payment should not be accepted.
  • If you want to accept a cheque as payment, make sure that the cheque has CLEARED (which usually takes about 3 working days) before handing over your item for sale. Also ensure that funds deposited into your account is available for use and not on hold with the bank.
  • The prospective buyer should bring the cash to you. Going with the buyer to the ATM, Bank or other source of revenue puts you at greater risk.
  • Be alert when selling your cell phone. Fraudsters have a tendency to swop the phone that you are selling
  • Remember: If something sounds to good to be true, it most probably is a scam.

If you are a victim of a scam or become aware of a scam or fraudulent activity via Junk Mail, please report it to us via our Customer Care department. You can contact them on 012-3423840 x2295 (during office hours) or e-mail them via ccc@junkmail.co.za.

Remember that many scam warnings like this one are posted on the Junk Mail Blog, check them out via the links on the Safety & Security page.

Henno Kruger

Digital Marketing Campaign Coordinator at Junk Mail Publishing.

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10 Responses

  1. Terrence says:

    They is a guy dark in coulor claimed he is a truck driver from Namibia he also called me last year when I was selling my Nissan hardbody he was in witbank that time, he asked me if I can drive the bakkie from Pretoria and bring it to witbank he liked tha picture of the bakkie on junk mail he’ll deffinately buy the bakkie, so l drove the bakkie there he liked it, he then told me to drive him to a friends home wher the money was because the friend owed him 750000 for the diamonds he had smuggled into south Africa. I did that and when l got there they showed me money that inside a school bag they said it was a bout 900000 but the can’t give it to the guy unless he removes one small dirty mark that was in the other diamond, the guy told me that he doesent have the money to have that dirt cleaned he then asked me if l can help him with 20 000 that was the price of cleaning it , he promised that he was gona give me 150000 for my bakkie if l did I has no money, he then asked if l can let the other dealers that are selling cars there in witbank buy my bakkie for at least 20 000 l then began to think maybe this is a scam l then ran away the guy kept on calling me the whole week after that

  2. Juanita says:

    Same old “Namibian” Truck driver scam guy as previously, just read another blog where he robbed a lady in cape town. Well spoken in Afrikaans with gold in his teeth?

    • Junk Mail Admin says:

      Thanks for your feedback Juanita. Let’s hope this person (and others like him) get apprehended for scamming people out of their hard earned money

  3. jean says:

    Had the same truckdriver from namibia contact me twice on diffrent numbers a week apart.he said he wanted to buy my car,but I had to come to him.first to Vereniging and then to Rustenburg.goes by the names david and alfred.also gave me a story about diamonds etc….if I ever see him,ill knock his gold teeth down his throat!!!!

  4. Claire says:

    Thank you so much for this post. This man phoned me all week, and was supposed to meet him tomorrow in Rustenburg. He is very pushy on the telephone. And i thought something was weird. So glad i read this. Saved me from driving all the way to Rustenburg. And from being scammed.

  5. Wessel says:

    I responded to an add in junk mail for a car and the person replied to me:”
    I am a VerifiedTrader so the transaction will be done through eBay so we can both be protected. If you’re ready for this purchase, I need to know your full name and address for delivery because as soon as I have them I will start the official procedure and eBay will notify you about this. eBay will send you an Invoice with all the info you need to complete the transaction. Also a 10 days refund policy will be included so if you will not like the car or if something will be wrong you will receive your money back in the same day without any charges from your side.”
    I have never done such an transaction and it just do not sound true. Am I taking a risk?

  6. Rika says:

    Hi i have the same thing happenning to me althou i did not gave any personal info this is what i got back just now
    Hi Rika Du Plooy and thanks for your interest in my vehicle,

    My asking price is R29000 including all the fees of the transaction. I will be more than happy to show you the bakkie, but as I told you I left it at Gumtree storehouse and they will send the bakkie to your home address once the transaction is started. I had a few transactions with them thanks to my work around the world and I trust their services for lower fees and I will be sure that you will get the bakkie without any scratches or damages. The registration disc on the wind screen is still valid. When I left the bakkie in gumtree custody I have signed the notification of change of ownership and I gave them the registration certificate and they made the police clearance to check if everything is fine with it. Please understand that I have a lot of inquires about the vehicle and the buyer will be the first one who accepts Gumtree conditions.
    Now let me explain the process and how this deal works.
    Once you confirm you agree the procedure, I will forward the details to their team and they will contact you with all the details that you need to complete the deal and also to see that we are covered by them and that I am a verified seller. The vehicle will be delivered to your home address once the payment is ready with insurance paid by me until you take the ownership, RWC, keys, logbooks, police clearance, full service plan and all the papers signed. Payment will be made to gumtree and not to me, I don’t ask any money in advance.
    After you send them the deposit receipt once with the invoice printed and signed you will receive the bakkie in 3 working days and you will have 7 days to inspect and test it with an mechanic, and also drive it for 500 km.
    At the end of the inspection period (7 days) you are forced to make a decision: keep it and gumtree will pay me or reject the vehicle and you will get fully refunded.
    If you agree the conditions and you decide to continue the transaction, you can send me your full name, address, phone number and a copy of your ID or passport so I can start the transaction. As soon as I will get the requested details, I will send you a copy of my passport so you can be sure of my good intentions.
    Yours faithfully,
    Boone Smith

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