It used to take several months to travel from China to United States of America by sea transportation. Now, it only takes a few seconds to chat to your friends online by social network (facebook, what app, skype, google +) as long as we have a smart phone, desktop or laptop computer. Although, we are in the age of information and feel that we are advancing, are we really? Can we distinguish what is the right or wrong in morally and in legally? Can we spot a liar when a cheater speaks and acts like the most honest person in the world and repeats the words “I swear to god I am an honest person” 10 times to your face before you can trust him? I am stupid I have cheated more times than I can remember.
Recently, I have been cheated by two foreign scam artists.
My friend and I cofounded a trade company in Hongkong, which is totally legitimate by the way. We know there are many opportunities in the international trade business, and we want to make a new venture and explore into importing dried sea food industry. I have 3 years international trade business experience, and my friend has so many years of dried sea food experience. He was also able to financially support the venture. It is a win-win situation for both of us. By the way, it is my side business. My major business is still LED engineering. To begin with, I was searching for suppliers on google. Surprising, there were only a few websites I could find, which were poorly constructed. As far as we knew, there are many good LED websites on the internet. Then, I realized that the fisherman may not have the skills needed to building a website and promote it online. Therefore, I was able to find another way of finding the sea food suppliers. I searched on the b2b platform and social networks. There are two sides to the story on this matter. Amazing, I could find many suppliers. Unfortunately, there were many cheats and scams online, including these two scum artists who I found on alibaba.
I am a grown up man, but still I have so many stupid ideas and false hopes.
False idea number one: I always thought a website owner can’t be a fraud, especially when it is good website because I know how much time it takes to build it.
Scum number one: eric lee
Address: NY Office: 101 Lafayette St, New York, NY USA 10013
Corporate: 26500 Overseas Highway Ramrod Key, Florida 33042
We can still open scum number one’s website. I do everything I can before I send him the payment. First, we asked for some samples.
After testing the samples, we signed a contract of 100 kg trial order and the total value of 13.2 thousand USD. Then, we checked his company certificates. I thought I had done more than enough. To protect our company privacy, I am going to reveal the contract here. According to the contract, we made 50% payment of total value (6600 USD) as deposit to scum number one’s main company account. Please check the account and the payment slip below. After receiving our money, that son of a batch found the lamest excuses in the world to postpone the delivery time. Stupid as I was, I believed him. He claimed that he could not find the sea cucumber in America, he had to go further from America to find sea cucumber, there was no internet he could access, etc. One month later, he disappeared completely. He never replied my phone call or emails ever again. I did the everything (called my friend on aboard, emailed and called Chinese Embassy in USA, called America Embassy in China and found some attorneys) I can to bring him down. But it did not work until I found my good friend and good customer C. C made a threatening call with a strong tone. When he realized that he couldn’t get out free without consequences, he finally made a promise to pay me back. It has been more than 5 months since we made the payment. We still could not see a single penny. We already hired a lawyer. I’d rather never get a cent back and spend all that money on the attorney rather than see that SOB walking free with all our money in his pocket. Eric lee now claimed he was innocent after he disappeared for a few months. Who does he think I am? The stupidest person who has ever existed on the planet and in all human history wouldn’t be stupid enough to trust him again. In my heart, I always know he is liar, cheater, and scum.
Beneficiary Accnt No: Florida Sea Cucumber Corp.
Beneficiary Address: 101 Lafayette St. 10th flr Ny NY 10013
Name of Bank: East West Bank
Bank Address: 135 N. Los Robles Ave. Suite 600 Pasadena, CA 91101
Account #: 86-51002720
Routing #: 026013796
False idea number two: never trust a person who always swears to god he is an honest person because he is not.
Scum number two: Pedro Pablo Puerto Novelo
Address: calle 42 num 543 b x 71 col centro, Merida , Yucatan, Mexico
He always told me I can trust him and ran away with our money. When I first met him, I told him we can’t do business with the private and he must have a company if he ever wanted it to work. Then he began to swear to god and sent me his certificate of identification and passport. He signed his name on the contract with his fingerprint. We finally agreed to make the payment to his personal account.
Beneficiary bank : BBVA Bancomer
Bank address : Calle 65 No 506 Col. Centro. Merida, Yucatan, Mexico
Beneficiary Name: Pedro Pablo Puerto Novelo
Addres: Calle 42 No 543 b x 71 Col. Centro. C.P. 9700. Merida, Yucatan, Mexico
Account No.: 0197378289
SWIFT# : BCMRMXMMPYM
We made our first transaction in January 2015. We paid 5000 USD deposit for 100 kg dried fish maw (total value 10000 USD,100USD/KG) and we finally got the goods back in three months later. But it was only 50 KG, it was not 100kg according the contract. He claimed he can’t get enough money to buy more fish maws because the financial problem and he had already applied a bank load, but he could not get the money in 2-3 months. The quantity was not the problem, what really worried me most was the quality. That bastard sent me the good quality samples and sent me worse quality dried fish maws in bulk order. Then he swore to god again, he misunderstood what we meant. He agreed that the value of first batch of trial order was 65 USD/KG and begged us to give him a second chance. By the way, it turned out we couldn’t even sell 65 USD/KG because of the bad quality. I always thought everyone should have a second chance. How stupid I was! Now I have a different opinion. Not everyone deserves a chance. He claimed that he couldn’t get the bank load in 2 to 3 months, we could not wait that long, therefore we sent 3800 USD to his bank account after we signed another contract. That SOB disappeared the minute he got our money.
I have contacted the Chinese Embassy in Mexico and have got some help from C. I am going to hunt him down no matter or what.
1.We can’t trust anyone as long as we are talking about money no matter how long we have known each other or how good they are to you. In the business world, the only reason they are good to me is because they are up to something. Money and friendship don’t mix.
2.The safest transaction method for both parties (supplier and buyer) is LC (letter of credit). LC is only feasible for big amount of payment because the big commission fee. PAYPAL is more suitable of small payment.
3.Do due diligence investigation before business is necessary. It can save you a lot of time and trouble if you are really encountering a scum. Here are a few tips to do due diligence investigation. One, it is the best if you can do on site investigation. Everyone knows, but it is now possible for everyone because it needs time to travel and it costs too much. Two, ask for the social network account information. Only someone has been in one industry for a really time, otherwise, it is not possible for him to have a full detailed company page on facebook and linkedin, and have hundred of friends. Three, ask for the three customers’ phone numbers and make phone call investigation. Not everyone is willing to share their customers’ phone number. But if he does, it is more than often that he is not a fraud.
I really don’t want to get cheated again, so I will follow all these rules.