PUPPY scammers have conned 28 people into buying dogs that don’t exist, with victims losing a total of $51,000 so far this year, WA’s Consumer Protection said.
Fake advertisements on trading websites and social media show cute photos and cheap prices, with victims told to pay for transport, crates, insurance, shipping fees, vaccinations and quarantine clearances.
“The buyers fall in love with the images and believe the puppy is on its way, which leaves them vulnerable to pay whatever is demanded,” Consumer Protection Commissioner David Hillyard said on Thursday.
“Consumers should check whether the sellers have a legitimate physical address, a landline and an Australian Business Number, plus look for online reviews.”
An eight-year-old girl and an 80-year-old man were just two victims of a ‘puppy for sale’ scam run on Gumtree by Rockingham woman Estelle Makwana earlier this year.
Makwana made close to $7500 from the scam where she pretended to have puppies for sale but never did.
She appeared in Rockingham Magistrates Court in May for sentencing on 10 charges of gaining benefit by fraud.