Free pickup for sale

I decided that since we got the Ford Focus to use as Kate’s commuter car we really didn’t need the pickup parked out there all the time.  If I needed to go to town I could use the 2004 Ford Escape which we didn’t trade in.  So, I listed it in the local paper:

“87 Chev pickup – basic work truck, V8, no air, no radio $1400” (plus my cell number)


So today I got this text message:

“Do u still have the 1987 Chevrolet available for sale if so get back  to me with the price and pictures via email. peter”

Sounded promising, so I sent a short email with pictures, re-stating the price.


Then I got THIS email from the prospective buyer/ripoff artist:

Thanks very much for your response. I would be buying the 87 Chevy
Pickup you have for sale so kindly reserve it for me.I am sending you
this email to make final reconfirmation of the 87 Chevy Pickup which
am willing to buy form you and I also want to let you know that
payment will be by certified Check . However, I want to alert you on
the fact that you will be receiving the Check this week or next week
and payment will cover your cost and as well as the shipping cost to
be paid to the person that will take care of the pickup in your
place..So please as soon as you receive the payment,get it cashed
immediately, deduct the money that accrues to you and send the
remaining balance to the Head Office of the company that handles the
shipment via Western union. More so, I will pay you an extra $50 if
you can reserve this for me.So in view of the above, Here are some of
the details I will need for final issuance of the Check to you.

(1) Full Name
(2) Mailing address, no please
(3) your direct telephone number both home and cell.?
{4} Acceptance of my offer
(5} Final asking price

Once you get back to me with all the above information’s, the check or
money order will be issued out immediately and it will be sent to you.



After reading this, I figured out that all I needed to do would be to cash his  certified check and deliver the truck somewhere for him.  Then, all that needed to be done would be to have a chat with the bank when they called me reporting that the certified check didn’t clear and that I needed to bring them the money right away.


Here’s the response I sent the prospective buyer(?):

Hello Peter,
   There are a number of conditions on your proposal that I find perplexing.  At any rate, here is what I propose:
1.  You or your agent come to see the truck, make sure it runs(yes, it does) and that you are satisfied that it is reliable (yes, it is – it always starts, even in the coldest weather), and that it is suitable for you.
2.  You bring me cash, and I will give the pickup to you and hand you the title.
I do not wish to be cheated, nor do I wish to cheat anyone else.  If you are not happy with my proposal, I will plan to sell it to the next person who inquires.
Thank you.
Oddly enough, he has not responded to that missive.  So, I decided to list on Craigslist, and while I was doing that, this warning notice came up:
Avoid scams and fraud by dealing locally! Beware any deal involving Western Union, Moneygram, wire transfer, cashier check, money order, shipping, escrow, or any promise of transaction protection/certification/guarantee.
Pretty good advice, I’m thinking.

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