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***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

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***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

I sold a broken Video Card (as described) on eBay in April to a buyer in the Netherlands for $670, and shipped the item EXACTLY as instructed by eBay for using their Global Shipping Center. They buyer paid the shipping costs charged by eBay, and everything was fine. A couple weeks later the Buyer opens a dispute with PayPal because Pitney Bowes evidently charged him an extra $115 for import charges and fees; these fees were NOT disclosed by eBay at the time of purchase (not MY fault), so neither of us had any idea. When you look at the receipt of payment on the eBay translation, there is a notation of 3rd party fees charged by Pitney Bowes. When he opened up the case, it opened up the full case, and caused a dispute with the whole transaction.

 

PayPal spams me so much with e-mails, that I have some of their e-mails filtered, and it turns out, the initial dispute e-mails were being filtered and I just never saw them (I was also in the middle of moving); I didn't notice there was even a dispute filed until the day it was closed, and I only know that because PayPal used a different e-mail format, that didn't get filtered, that ended up directly in my inbox (where I saw it). I called PayPal, and they're worthless; apparently if you don't reply to the initial dispute e-mails (no matter the reason), they automatically side with the Buyer, and you're SOL; they're AWARE that Buyers use this as a loop hole (the Agent let it slip out), but if you don't respond to the INITIAL dispute request, you automatically lose. I called them on June 4th to reopen the case, which they did, I sent them the required information (shipping confirmation, receipt, receipt with 3rd party charge on it, etc.), and they still denied it because of lack of response to the INITIAL e-mail. Their reason was that there is nothing they could do now. How is that?! They SEE it's fraud, why does it matter WHEN it happened? Why can't they just pull the funds out of his account and return them to me, like they did with MINE to him??!! The funds never came out of my CC account, nor checking account (PayPal held them), so I can't even put in a stop payment and open a fraud case. If there a potentially fraudulent transaction with a CC or through a Bank Account, they'll then refund the payment and go after the one who committed fraud. Why can't PayPal do that? What the <removed>?!

 

Normally I'd just chalk it up to crappy business practices, and my fault for not seeing the e-mail; I'd still be really **bleep** off, but I should have covered my own **bleep**. HOWEVER, when the Buyer initially opened up the dispute he wrote in the comments that the issues was NOT with me; he calls me out, by name, and says it's NOT my fault, but Pitney Bowes. PayPal saw this when the initially sided with him, so even though he stated it wasn't MY fault, PayPal still decided with him, gave him a FULL refund, and let him keep the item. I argued with the Agent about this, and I just ended up hanging up on them as they kept trying to blame ME. They told me straight up that just because the "open" up the case to do an "appeal," doesn't mean anything is going to actually happen. 

 

See below:

 

  • 4/19/2018 09:06 EDT - Buyer: This message is dedicated not to *name omitted*, but to Pitney Bowes, Inc. Apparently when I open a dispute about the payment to Pitney Bowes, Inc. it will open the original Paypal transaction as well.Reason for opening this dispute is about the "Import charges" charged by Pitney Bowes, Inc. Simply put; they are absurd!The Pitney Bowes, Inc. were:Import charges: 151,14 USDShipment and packaging: 24,21 USDFirst off; I fully understand the shipping and packaging price, however I don't understand the import charges. They are completely unjustified.First off; the videocard is defect and not working, as described by the seller. Also according to European Law the amount which can charged for import is 2.5% maximum.This would mean 2.5% of 669.75 USD is 16.74 USD.Maybe there are some other little charges, however the amount of 151.14 USD is totaly unacceptable by Pitney Bowes, Inc.!Furthermore; not only was the product defect (as described), but the declared value was also way lower, according to the shipping notice. Declared value on the commercial shipping invoice is: 362.50 USD.So I am expecting Pitney Bowes, Inc. to at least return 100 USD. This is more than reasonable considering the insane amounts Pitney Bowes, Inc. is charging.Once again, this is not for the seller, but for Pitney Bowes, Inc. When I opened the dispute about the Pitney Bowes, Inc. transaction, PayPal opens the complete / original payment as well."

 

I contacted the buyer, and he never responded; however I'm SURE he noticed the EXTRA $670 in his bank account, so he is just as guilty as the rest of them, in my opinion, and has committed fraud. 

 

My advice is to stalk whatever mailbox your PayPal e-mails go into until the funds clear and are physically in your bank account, and DON'T sell to International Buyers as you have even LESS legal recourse than if you sold to a US buyer (who am I going to report mail fraud to, the FBI, United Nations? hahaha). DON'T expect PayPal to help you without your DIRECT intervention; no matter what the original case notes say. There is VERY LITTLE "Seller Protection;" you get one shot. 

 

PayPal knows the game/scam, but don't seem to care; they'll blame YOU if you don't happen to see the e-mail and respond. They'll take the money from the SELLER and refund it to the BUYER, but apparently can't do the opposite even when they SEE it was fraud. No crap the Buyer isn't going to respond; not many people would do something that would make them lose $670 when they got it for free with a loop hole. 

 

I lost the WHOLE $670, as well at the item.

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Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

I've officially logged a complaint with the BBB. I know this won't do anything, and I know my money is gone, but if people just give up, PayPal will just keep doing this. 

 

I don't care what they're (PayPal) reasoning is, this is FRAUD on their part. Not replying to an initial claim e-mail is not a legal waiver of my rights to dispute, and it does not legally close the case; it doesn't matter how much time has passed. It is also NOT stated in their User Agreement that failure to respond to the initial claim e-mails waives your right to appeal. If the initial claim submission was so important, than why DIDN'T I get a phone call from PayPal? You can NOT assume that an e-mail was read, just because it was sent, and e-mail is NOT official contact. There are a thousand reason why someone might not get an e-mail. 

 

Evidence was submitted, as requested, when they "reopened" the case, and PayPal ignored it, because I didn't respond to the initial claim e-mail. Who cares?! I responded to this one, with evidence, and PayPal REFUSES to do anything about it; PayPal is an accessory to international mail fraud. 

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Contributor

Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

I experienced something similar a year ago or so.

Similar experience like yourself. Buyer started a claim with PayPal (about some duty charges), didn't respond in time due to some personal matters.
Obviously I objected, but without success.

 

I tried to contact the buyer several times, but I did not hear anything back. So I took my loss…
About 1 1/2 month later, I received an email from the buyer! Apparently he was in the hospital (car accident, if I recall correctly). Anyways he refunded the full amount!

 

So maybe there is still hope and something similar has happened to you as well in this? Maybe it's worth to be patient?

 

Contributor

Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

I was just re-reading everything you posted, however I noticed something off with your story...

 

Correct me if I am wrong; but you sold a BROKEN videocard for 670 USD?!

How did you pull that one off? I don't ever sell broken things on the internet. It will only get you in trouble. And sounds to me that you were also trying to pull of some kind of scam here. Sorry to say, but that is the impression I get when I was re-reading your post. I think you should really be ashamed of yourself for selling something broken for that amount! However that is my personal opinion though. 

 

Other than that; maybe the buyer misread that it was broken, because I cannot seriously think of a reason a sane person would buy a broken videocard. No matter what.

 

I personally find this whole situation kinda fishy, maybe it's karma for you, because you are selling broken stuff on the internet? Are you doing this often? I wouldn't be surprised if you did actually.

 

 

I think you are both not fully sane; maybe thats why this escalated in the first place. Do not trust my opinion, but never ever sell broken stuff on the internet. It will always  come back at you in the end.

 

 

Well, that being said; I wish you all the luck with this and the BBB. Though the buyer might have not been fair in this situation, but neither are you. You sold a piece of hardware which was broken for an insane amount.

Contributor

Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

Richard,

 

It was a auction for a broken Geforce 1080ti video card, that was listed on eBay as "for parts, not working." Due to Bitcoin mining, these cards were, at the time, going for OVER 1.5x their MSRP new, and people were buying them however they could; a lot of people buy them broken to fix them. The eBay auction was complete with 15 pictures, and a 3 paragraph description complete with back story as to how it broke, so they knew what they were getting into. You said you re-read it; did you not see the paragraph I wrote that was a direct quote from his saying the issue was NOT with ME, but with Pitney Bowes? I sell broken items on eBay ALL THE TIME because it allows me to get some money back; that is why there is a category named, "for parts, not working."

 

The issue is that he opened up a "not as described" claim with PayPal over the import charges from Pitney Bowes. In the initial claim, he wrote that the issue was NOT with me, but with Pitney Bowes. Apparently a Chimp runs the PayPal claim process because who ever the idiot was that "reviewed" it, never bother to comprehend what he was saying, thus, they STILL ruled in his favor and gave him a full refund. I called PayPal, and another Chimp answered the phone. He saw what the Buyers stated, AGREED with me, and reopened up the case. I then sent them a mound of evidence and waited. Apparently the same Chimp that review the case the first time, reviewed it the second time, never looked at the evidence, and again, ruled in HIS favor. I call PayPal AGAIN, and another Chimp answered the phone, and said, "sorry, there is nothing we can do." They also said that they were aware of scams like these, but since i didn't respond to the initial e-mail, they "can't" do anything. BS, yes they can; revert the payment back to my account. 

 

Either the Buyer knew this would happen, and that's why he opened it up with PayPal and NOT eBay, or maybe it was an honest complaint about Pitney Bowes, and it just happened to fall on me. Regardless over the last 4 weeks, I've tried to reach out to the buyer, both vial e-mail and eBay, and have heard nothing back. He may not have noticed my messages for whatever reason, but I REFUSE to believe that he didn't "notice" the extra $670 in his bank account; so in my opinion, he is just as guilty of facilitating fraud as PayPal.

 

Since he's an international buyer, there is absolutely no recourse for me. 

Contributor

Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

It was also an AUCTION that stared at $100. Do you not know how an auction works? Regardless if I had a "buy it now" price for $100,000 who cares? The item was 100% as described (quoted from the BUYER in the initial claim e-mail; you'll see if you re-read again), so he knew what he was buying. The entire point of an AUCTION is to get as much money as possible. 

 

<removed>

Contributor

Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

The Agent also TOLD me that when you don't respond to the initial e-mail, than that is IT. They said that even though they may reopen the case for "appeal," in reality, they just do that to appease the other party; they're not going to do anything, or even look at the evidence. That is why it was so critical to respond to the initial e-mail. 

 

I'm not expecting PayPal to do anything about this; I could call them every day and complain threaten legal action, etc., but I'll only end up driving myself insane in the end. The point of this long rant was to give other people a heads up and warning about: A: DON'T sell to International Buyers, EVER. B: stalk your inbox after a sale to make sure you don't miss any e-mails.

 

Maybe my situation can help someone else avoid this situation in the future. If the Buyer was in the US, I could contact US agencies for assistance or to at least report it. Since he's International, I'm SOL. 

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Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

Contributor

Re: ***FRAUD*** - PayPal settled with International Buyer; FULL refund, no item!

I should have updated this; believe it or not the BBB came through for me and PayPal gave me ALL my money back. The Account Manager was very nice and apologetic to what happened. It's just a shame that I had to take it that far; they really need to retrain their phone support staff...