Scam dupes Norwich dog-lover out of �1000
Peter WalshAnimal lovers from Norwich have been warned about a scam which offers dogs for sale - and then fails to deliver them. Norfolk police have received a number of calls from concerned dog enthusiasts over the past few days who fear they have been duped.Peter Walsh
Animal lovers from Norwich have been warned about a scam which dogs are offered for sale, but then are not delivered to the buyers.
Norfolk police have received a number of calls from concerned dog enthusiasts over the past few days, who fear they have been duped.
One victim, a woman from the Norwich area, paid �1,000 up front to secure a dog she saw advertised on the internet. The cash was to allegedly cover animal, shipping and vet fees.
A man from the King's Lynn area paid more than �200 after replying to an advertisement for a dog on a national newspaper's website.
In all cases reported to Norfolk police, the callers have been initially told that the dog will be coming from Scotland and money is required up front.
More money is then requested for shipping/quarantine fees and if they do not pay up the 'seller' makes threats to report the person for animal cruelty.
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A spokeswoman for Norfolk police warned people never to buy an animal off the internet or from an unknown seller, but to go to a reputable, local breeder or sanctuary.
Norfolk Trading Standards has also been contacted by residents who have responded to online adverts offering 'free' puppies, only to find out that fees are then demanded.
Ann Jackson, senior trading standards officer, said: 'This is a typical advance fee fraud where money is requested to be sent by Moneygram money transfer and, in all cases reported to us, the money has ended up in the Cameroon.
'We would advise against responding to any such adverts and never to send money in this way. You will end up disappointed with no refund and no puppy.'
It is not the first time animal lovers from the county have been warned to be aware of scams involving dogs being sold in this way.
In August 2008, Norfolk's Trading Standards department issued guidelines after two Norfolk people were scammed while ordering pedigree dogs online.
Anyone worried about scams should call police on 0845 456 4567 or Norfolk Trading Standards on 08454 04 05 06.
Have you been duped by con artists? Call reporter Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email firstname.lastname@example.org