Romanian eBay scammers jailed
Three Romanian fraudsters who made at least £300,000 by listing bogus auctions on eBay were jailed today.
The three scammers set up an electronic scam ring, involving crime bosses in Romania, and are thought to have duped 3,000 victims around the world, Reuters reports.
Nicolae Cretanu, 30, was sentenced to three-and-a-half years imprisonment by Judge Duncan Matheson at Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court. His wife Adriana Cretanu and their accomplice George Titar received 30 months each.
Speaking at the trial, Mathseon told the Romanians that the scam was ‘a major and sophisticated fraud’ and admonished them for exploiting a ‘perceived weakness in the eBay system’.
According to Reuters, the three were found guilty of listing fictitious goods on the auction house website. Anybody who made a bid on the item was informed at the end of the auction that their offer had been unsuccessful and were then given a second chance to purchase similar items on a one-to-one basis. Bidders were asked to transfer money to a number of different aliases through Western Union money transfer outlets in London.
Goods ranging from scooters to military memorabilia were never received by disappointed eBayers and it is thought that Cretanu and co kept 30 per cent of the money while the remainder was given to crime bosses based in Romania.