eBay Fraud Victims
24Jun06, Rev 4th of July 2006; 28Aug06
jerry-va, McLean, VA

by a single seller on eBAY 6/06

315    fraudulent sales
  9     revealed by eBay (then feedback was frozen)
306       more listed on this site    page1     page 2
TOTAL SCAM:  over $140,000

Hi Jerry, Nice website. I had no idea that fraud was such a problem.
gdmaddog  (38)

NEWS: 28Aug06 The FBI has an agent on the case, but the case looks too small because they only count victims who personally log their fraud with the Internet Crime Complaint Center.  OK everybody, go to  http://www.ic3.gov/  and fill out the form.  See the "HOW2" below  for text to paste in  (MOVING TOWARDS CRIMINAL PROSECUTION).  Is this a bureaucratic  run-around or what?  eBay knows the number of fraud cases, and eBay has a liaison officer in contact with the FBI.  Oh well, be nice -- go do the form.   

NEWS: 7July06  
We have the perpetrator's name. He used this name at this address:
            ANDREW  TURKIN
            5429 Russell Ave  #29
            Hollywood, CA 90027
NEWS: 4July06  We have over 300 victims now.  Thanks for leads to missing victims,  lnc225.  
            And Judy, thanks for writing, welcome to the club--where's the eBay item# for that
            wonderful DVD recorder you bought?


I'm jerry-va and I've put up this Website to help a bunch of us who  were defrauded by the same eBay seller.  We were hit in mid-June 2006.   The negative feedback for fraudulent seller auction_price_for_you appeared suddenly after he had our money, killed his phone and left.  

Check out  the negative feedback so far.  (Actually, eBay froze the forum, so there won't be any more.)

This is a hassle for everyone.  We can work more effectively if we work together.  Yes, write to me if you
are not on the  alphabetized list of all victims.   It pushes overworked law enforcement people to give us some time if the case is bigger and more complete.   If you want to tell eBay what you think of their fraud prevention efforts, don't.  You can put more pressure on the company by writing to these ladies and gentlemen instead.  

eBay recognizes the fraud, has sent an e-mail to every victim, and is being very nice about expediting compensation.   You are in one of three groups.

1. You sent a cashier's check or money order
Amount of compensation: $200 max.  Deduct shipping costs, you won't get them.  (Most of the scammer's shipping charges were $20, $30, or $40.)   Take $25 off the top.  If what's left is over $200, deduct that.  You get what's left.  You are in the  "eBay Standard Purchase Protection Program".

The form to fill out for compensation is here:

The materials can be mailed or faxed.  You need a copy of your money order or cashier's check.

Fraud Protection Program (of eBay)
Attn: Claims Administration Dept.
P.O. Box 188
Draper, Utah 84020
(877) 814 - 3953

If you sent a US Post Office money order, see below:  MOVING TOWARDS CRIMINAL PROSECUTION / ACTION - POSTAL INSPECTOR REPORT and file a report on-line against Andrew Turkin.  Thanks.  

 2.  You paid with PayPal
One person has written that eBay is refunding substantially their entire payment.  You are in the PayPal Buyer Protection Program   Normally PayPal grievances pass through a dispute stage to the claim stage no more than 20 days later, but, in this case, eBay is graciously starting victims out with claims.  Thank you, eBay.  

People who claimed on 23 June (the day PayPal shut him down and wrote everyone) have gotten refunds on 3 July.  panna(371) stop seething, you'll be OK.

One victim who purchased on 21 June, 2 days before eBay shut down the scammer, says eBay is returning his own funds -- it doesn't cost them a cent.  

ACTION: Send me the e-mail you got from eBay  (jerry-va at speakeasy dot net) so that I can put the link and information up here for others.  These e-mails are magic--they have links that are not  on the public Website.   I want victims who have lost the magic e-mail to be able to come here and click-to-file for compensation.  

3: You paid with a credit card
You may have used PayPal to transfer the money, but the money came from a credit card because you didn't have a big cash balance in your PayPal account.

People in this group need to get a chargeback from the credit card company and prove they failed trying to do so before eBay will pay, but regardless, you have a 60-day deadline at eBay to file a claim.  (Other programs have a 45 day deadline -- better to play it safe.)

You have to be logged into eBay to go to the ITEM NOT RECEIVED report page
Normally complaints pass through a dispute stage to the claim stage, but eBay knows this is fraud and there is nothing to talk about with the seller (perpetrator).   Skipping the wait for dispute resolution and going straight to filing a claim typically requires a "magic link" in an e-mail from eBay.  

ACTION: Send me the e-mail you got from eBay  (jerry-va at speakeasy dot net) so that I can put the link and information up here for others.  I am not in this group.  armankeywest, that's you!!

ACTION: do a good deed, find a user for whom this was their first or nearly first purchase, and take them under your wing --  did they even check their e-mail for the "magic links" from eBay?   You can click on any user to send them a message -- it takes 2 pages to list all the victims  Page1    Page2    Novices are the ones with zeros or a low number after their name,  e.g. huong865 ( 1 )

Imaging Art Inc.
5429 Russell Ave  #29
Hollywood, CA 90027
short blond hair, 5' 9", possibly a Russian immigrant, also goes by Andrey

Turkin did business as Imaging Art Inc.  Interestingly, there is another registered business in the same apartment building.   Contact Len ( lrthies at valornet removethistext dot com ) if you want to help track that down.


ACTION - IC3 REPORT: register your fraud with http://www.ic3.gov/ the Internet Crime Complaint Center.  When you are asked for the perpetrator's Website, you can use  http://ebayscammer.notlong.com  which is short enough to fit onto the form and takes any police officer to the page of outraged negative feedback for our scammer. When you're asked to describe the fraud incident, just cut-and-paste this in:

From the 10th until the 23rd of June 2006, substantially all goods offered for sale by eBay seller auction_price_for_you were fictitious and all completed transactions were fraudulent.  Until eBay shut him down on 23rd June, the seller pumped the system with over 300 listings, most requiring the buyer to send the seller a cashier's check or money order.  I encourage you to inspect every one of these listings and to contact any one of the victims by clicking on the listing number link or the eBay username link on this Victim's Support Website: http://ebayvictims.notlong.com   
The total fraud for over 315transactions is over $140,000.  
(back to top)

ACTION - POLICE REPORT: report the fraud to your own local police station.  We do not have to go to the Los Angeles police to report a crime against us personally.  Register with http://www.ic3.gov/ first (above).  My detective wanted to be sure I had done this.  Take documentation.  I needed:
  • printout of the listing, or name & model # of what I bought & item # on eBay
  • date of purchase, 
  • date I found out it was a fraud
  • copy of something showing what I paid
  • printout of letter from eBay indicating suspected fraud
  • letter asking seller for refund of non-delivered merchandise (registered, return receipt)
In return I received
  •  the officers business card w/contact info
  • a case number
Try to get an officer to put this site up on her/his computer and show her/him that all the victims are listed ( Page 1  Page 2  -- go to ebayvictims.notlong.com).  Show how  you can click to send any victim  a message (you must be a registered eBay user and log on).  

ACTION - POSTAL INSPECTOR REPORT:  If you paid with a US Postal Service (USPS) money order, file a report of Andrew Turkin's mail  fraud with  the USPS Postal Inspector's Office here:
If one person files, then it is a company vs. customer dispute.  If dozens of us file against Andrew Turkin, then we have established a pattern of fraud and it gets criminal action.  Please help.  Here's info you can  cut & paste into the form:
From the 10th until the 23rd of June 2006, substantially all goods offered for sale by Andrew Turkin, who is registered as eBay seller "auction_price_for_you",  were fictitious and all completed transactions were fraudulent.  Until eBay shut him down on 23rd June, the seller pumped the system with over 300 listings, most requiring the buyer to send the seller a cashier's check or money order.  The total fraud for over 315 transactions is over $140,000.  

I encourage you to inspect every one of these listings on Website http://ebayvictims.notlong.com.  This is a Victims Support Website created by one of the victims to help the others.  You may  contact any one of the victims by clicking on any eBay username  on the Victim's Support Website: http://ebayvictims.notlong.com  You may inspect any fraudulent sale by clicking on its item number.  

"Postal Inspectors caution that, once you've been targeted in a fraud scheme, your name may be passed along to other con artists, so beware of future solicitations."    (Thanks!)
The Postal Inspector can also be reached at  800/729-3324.  

BUT WAIT, THERE's MORE:   If you want a lot of places to complain (Better Business Bureau, Federal Trade Commission), links straight to each one are here: http://www.auctionbytes.com/cab/pages/fraud.  


ACTION:    Since eBay blocks users after 10 messages, I need your help to contact everyone. Please click and write to victims  not just to tell them they have company on   http://ebayvictims.notlong.com  (a short address for this site), but to ask for their eBay user's name and a real e-mail address.  Forward the answers here (jerry-va at speakeasy dot net)  so that we can have our own mailing list.  Click to write victims with the same beginning letter  as your own eBay user name -- don't  clobber the first guys on the list.  The victims are here:      Page 1       Page 2  

 We need to get off eBay's messaging system and onto real email addresses.  


ACTION:  Send a letter requesting your  money back, certified mail, return receipt requested.  This will cost you $4.64, but you must prove for the police file that you tried to get your money back and failed, not just that you paid but goods were never delivered.  Copies of this letter and the check/money order you used to pay can be filed with the Los Angeles police once we have a case number.  Act now, keep copies.  Letter to:
Andrew Turkin
 Imaging Art Inc.  
5429 Russell Ave  #29
Hollywood, CA 90027
818/536-4602  (dead -- phone rings thru to voice mailbox that is full)
eBay auction_price_for_you

Certified Mail Return Receipt for victim jerry-va
Certified mail return receipt for victim jerry-va.  Click to enlarge.


ACTION:  Try to call eBay, but read this first.     If you call eBay, please share your experiences with me.    The rest of us want to hear what happened, what hoops we are supposed to jump through, what you think we should do.  

            1 800 717 3229

ACTION: If you want to get eBay's attention and 45 minutes on a telephone menu tree isn't your cup of tea, stop trying to get through to eBay.  Instead, write to the Wall Street analysts who rate the stock.  Be positive. Make the company better.  Be factual.  Tell them what happened.   Here's your action list.

Understand what we are up against with eBay -- the Web is full of horror stories from both buyers and sellers.  A trip to any news site to search on "ebay fraud" yields many headlines:

    MSNBC  "EBay’s tough talk on fraud doesn’t withstand scrutiny " , 979 others
    CNN.com " Man arrested in huge eBay fraud.
            Buyers criticize auction site's seller verification service "
            and over 34 more page of headlines

Use alternatives, give up on eBay.  Many victims I found on the Internet gave up in frustration trying to deal with eBay and just urged readers to vote with their feet.  Their comments and more suggestions for eBay alternatives are here.  These are the best ones:


It looks like PayPal gives back about $14 million each year to unhappy campers, and our little band of victims is about 300 bad buys out of 220,000 sales ending in fraud each year.  It's hard to say.   There are more notes on the first page of listed victims -- you can  use the BACK button on top of the browser to return  if you go for a look.   I am pleased to say that some of us are getting refunds, and that seems only fair to me.  


Ebay's magic is that they permit individuals in homes across the country to get together and sell things to one another as if they lived on the same block.  Most of the customers are small.  eBay has $4,500,000,000 in annual sales.  Profits in 2005 were  $1,082,000,000  This is a multi-billion dollar company (three cheers -- not every dot com when dot bust).

We were defrauded because their system is far from perfect.  Hello, eBay -- may we have a list  of everyone defrauded by eBay seller "auction_price_for_you"?  Can we speak to a human customer care representative?  Can we  get an email that is not machine-generated by Customer Relationship Management software?   Why did you persuade buyers  to withdraw their negative feedback instead of investigating the fraudulent seller and shutting him down?   Did you really think  the perpetrator "auction_price_for_you" had suddenly obtained a warehouse and trailer loads of consumer gear when you let him spring his trap and list a ton of items at once?  How many criminal convictions has eBay won against those who defrauded their system and their customers?  I have reported the crime to my local police -- who is your police liaison contact for my local police officer to call for help?    

eBay had the choice as a multi-billion dollar corporation with mostly small customers to be a good corporate citizen, including paying for effective criminal prosecutions, or instead to be a company that takes  advantage of their customers -- the  people who gave them their success.   We will have to judge for ourselves how they have chosen.  


"Auction has ended with Buy It Now", but the fun has just begun.   "Buy It Now" sales of multiple items under a single listing facilitate fraud.  

Credit card companies know how to deal with fraud.  

If I suddenly buy a $4,000 luxury, my credit card company will call me personally  to make sure everything is really OK with me and my credit card.  Computer systems use artificial intelligence to detect departures from normal patterns. But eBay has implemented no control systems to catch a seller who suddenly has found the capital to purchase and offer for sale items worth a hundred times more than anything he has done before.  Did this user suddenly purchase trailer trucks and warehouses, or is he a fraud?  

We users love to find the isolated bargains on eBay.  Didn't eBay's computers notice that each of over 300 listings were priced $100 below the modal price of the same item in their database?   Are these isolated bargains or the game plan of one person  running  a hundred-thousand dollar fraud?  

And the flood of listings is larger still and therefore even easier to detect.  This Website lists  only the completed sales, twosies and threesies from listings that offered 5 and 10 items at a clip.    
Eleven SONY STR-DA3100ES 7.1 Channel Receivers in silver and black (listed individually) did not sell.  That's $5,500 in stock  right there.  Five Sony LCD monitors did not sell ( 88284068008828406758 8828406048, 8828405995, 8828405929)  -- another $1135 in stock.   Nothing suspicious you say?  Or is eBay  just too cheap, too comfortable, too isolated from what victims endure  to implement traffic monitoring systems as other companies do?  

What happens on eBay does not happen with credit cards.  These are the people who need a brief email about this.  Please put you mouth where your money was, and tell them what's going on behind the scenes at eBay.  


Our frustration and lost time costs the company nothing as long as eBay can keep us, the community of eBay  victims, hidden from the investing public, hidden from other users.  

The missing security systems that eBay does not have will cost some  money to implement, but leaving the auction site without them costs even less as long as the pain is hidden and the customers can be properly controlled.   Ebay does not foster community, it systemmatically thwarts "community".  Count the ways.
  1. Freeze feedback so victims cannot speak out.  
  2. Remove the scammer's pending sales from eBay servers so that no simple search can find the fraud.  
  3. Prevent searching completed sales limited to any one seller so that no simple search can find the fraud. 
  4. Limit the messaging service in order to limit the ease and speed with which victim communities can come together.  Preserve the asymmetry of a multi-billion dollar corporation on one side, and isolated individuals on the other.  
  5. Limit the amount of any information given to customers or the investment community about fraud.  
  6. Always list all services and choices on Webpages, even if the system is set to block the customer when he tries to hit the "send" button.  

Ebay would not have to stifle its community if it did a better job of practicing fraud control and pursuing criminal conviction.  Wouldn't to be better to make a community proud of you than to forever have to manage and control it?

Early Internet companies were one-way.  They generated content, and we could look at it.  The archetype of this first-generation, "Internet 1.0" company is the corporation that puts its glossy brochures on a Website.  All we can do is look at them.  Very nice.  

This one-way view of the Internet is cast in stone in the DSL and cable modems that American citizens use for Internet access today.  DSL is short for ADSL and ADSL stands for "Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line". The "asymmetry" is that they can shove their content onto you with fast speeds and high bandwidth, but you can share the content you generate with the world only at slow speeds and low bandwidth.  The Internet is America's gift of the century to the entire world.  But freedom of speech on the soapbox of the century is asymmetric -- we are here to receive.  

But new Internet 2.0 applications have bubbled up from  the most innovative country on earth anyway, even if the national communications infrastructure in that country is  increasingly lagging  the rest of the world.  Today users publish  blogs that they write themselves, sites like topix.net not only show the news but invite reader comments on it, photos are shared on flickr.com, and utube shows home-produced video clips.

Internet 2.0 creates community through enhanced user-to-user contact.  People who care, share.

It has been my experience in trying to find and help fellow victims of $140,000 in fraudulent eBay sales that eBay manages its community.   Ebay does not foster its community.

The very special  community of eBay fraud victims is stifled.  If our support group finds itself, it will be over the barriers placed in our path by eBay practices and policies.  

The Internet moves on Internet time.  eBay's own  time may have come and gone.  eBay is an Internet 1.0 company in an Internet 2.0 world.  There are people who need a brief email about this.  

--jerry-va, your Webmaster

victims negative feedback 
LIST OF FRAUDULENT SALES:     1st half        2nd half    Click item#  to see listing by auction_price_for_you.  Click name to write to fellow victim.  Help newbies with a zero after their name first.  
alphabetized list of all victims    Easy to search but you can't just click to write.  
widespread unhappiness with eBay is all over the Web
try to phone eBay
write to experts on the company  eBay tells these Wall Street analysts that everything is under control.
                                                                    Do we need a reality check from the trenches?
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