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What fraud protection does seller have?


What fraud protection does seller have?

I recently sold (on ebay) a new iphone 4 to a new (he had a feedback rating of 2, both from same seller) ebay user.  The phone is/was new, had never been activated, but the box had been opened and this was indicated in the ebay listing.  The listing also indicated that the phone is locked to the Rogers system in Canada.


The phone was sold to a person in Russia.  Once he received the phone, he started sending me these nasty emails calling me a criminal, fraudster, etc. because he said the phone was not new, that it was used, all scratched up, and that the accessories (ear buds) were "greasy" and used.  He is not describing the phone I sent him, which as noted, is new, and the accessories in the iphone box were in fact still in their original shrink wrap from the manufacturer.


I offered him a full refund, provided he send the same phone back to me in the same condition it was in when i sent it to him.  The nasty emails continued, and then he opened a case with Paypal and immediately escalated it.


Paypal has placed a hold on the funds in my account, and has indicated that as soon as they receive notification that the seller has returned the item to me, they will release the refund.


I have no problem refunding this guy's money if in fact the SAME phone is sent back to me in the same, unused condition.  But because he is not describing the phone I sent him, I am concerned that I will receive something worthless back from him, yet Paypal will release the refund to him.  At that point, I am guessing he will, with his feedback rating of "2", promptly close down his Paypal account so I won't be able to open up a new dispute, and I will be out both a new iphone and $400 US.


I have the serial number of the phone I sent this guy and a receipt from the Apple store -- I would like to at least confirm that I receive the same phone back from him before Paypal releases the refund, but I can't seem to contact anyone at Paypal about this case to ask for that.


By the way, the fellow at Apple confirmed that I am definitely being set up in a scam here, as apparently happens all the time with sales from Russia.  So here I am a sitting duck, waiting to be ripped off, and Paypal is a willing participant!!


Has anyone else had an experience like this and did you have ANY protection offered from Paypal.  At this point it seems to me that they are so eager to protect the seller that I am automatically assumed to be in the wrong here.