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Intention of Fraud by "mistaken" overpayment
Thread poster: Rodolfo Peña

Rodolfo Peña  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 13:37
English to Spanish
+ ...
Dec 15, 2010

Recently we were approached to do a 30,000+ translation job by a person that said he/she lived in the UK. They offered to pay us via Traveler's Checks since the person said he/she did not have PayPal or was able to wire transfer money.

After asking several times to see the text we were to transfer, I received 4000 euros in the mail. They came in an envelope, postmarked in Spain. No note, no explanation, nothing but the Traveler's Checks. That same day we received an email asking us to cash the checks, take 1000 euros for ourselves as payment for the translation (which we had not done yet), and to send the balance (3000 euros) via Western Union to an address in Navarra, Spain.

I called American Express and found that the checks were fakes, probably counterfeit and that the serial numbers were invalid. I was asked to report this to the police and to the translator community that seems to be the target of these thieves that are seeking to use us to launder their counterfeit checks.

Be careful,
Rodolfo Peña


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Spencer Allman
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:37
Finnish to English
Translators are very intelligent Dec 15, 2010

So they obviously did not realise that it is not so easy to dupe one

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imatahan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:37
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Not worthy Dec 15, 2010

It's not worthy to say us that, first of all because it's an old trick that is being applied to some translators, and probably on other professionals too, second because ProZ doesn't allow you to say the name of the trickers.

Without their names, you are not protected against those individuals.


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imatahan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:37
English to Portuguese
+ ...
So Dec 15, 2010

If you don't mind, please send his/her/their name(s) as e-mail to me, please.

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Georgi Kovachev  Identity Verified
Bulgaria
Local time: 14:37
Member (2010)
English to Bulgarian
+ ...
I had the same experience in September Dec 15, 2010

My case was same. In August I received an order by e-mail by a Mr. Dave Jordan from the UK for a text worth 245 GBP. Later, when I asked for an advanced payment, I received a check for 3000 GBP by ordinary post. It was dated 16 Jan 2010. The instructions were to pay back the difference by Western Union. The bank advised me that most likely it is a fake one since it's too old and not to proceed with it.
When I asked to be paid by Western Union DJ kept on insisting to cash the check. I refused. I haven't heard from him since the end of September (I don't remember the exact date).


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Rodolfo Peña  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 13:37
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
This seems to be the same gang with the same modus operandi Dec 15, 2010

Georgi,

Yes, they used the same method with me. I called American Express right away to check the validity of the check numbers. They told me that the checks were forged. I have sent them to the Fraud department of Amex in Salt Lake City. They can tell a lot from the paper, ink, etc. with which the checks were made.

I was asked to send the "excess" (sic) payment to an address in Navarra, Spain. The police think that this gang operates from Andorra.


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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:37
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
There is a whole forum on the site about scams, and a Wiki article, too Dec 15, 2010

Please check it out, and keep it in mind as a resource whenever you suspect a scam.

http://www.proz.com/forum/scams-946.html


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Neil Coffey  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:37
French to English
+ ...
Traveller's cheque... Dec 15, 2010

Rodolfo Peña wrote:
Recently we were approached to do a 30,000+ translation job by a person that said he/she lived in the UK. They offered to pay us via Traveler's Checks since the person said he/she did not have PayPal or was able to wire transfer money.


Right, because your clients usually pay for translations by traveller's cheque...

As has been said before, if a client contacts you with more concerns about elaborate payment mechanisms than the quality of the actual translation, then alarm bells should be tolling loudly...


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Intention of Fraud by "mistaken" overpayment

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