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eBay Sellers Beware of Buyer Powercreditbay for False Item Not Received Claims

  I've been selling on eBay for about 8 years and just went thru my worst experience on the site.  I sold a vintage Waltham watch to this buyer Powercreditbay on November 13, 2011; this buyer is a resident of China and told me to ship the watch to another person in Brooklyn, New York.  I don't ship overseas and have overseas buyers' blocked, my auctions are available for USA shipping only.  I was paid thru PayPal on Sunday, November 14th and planned to ship the watch on Monday morning.  On Monday I received an e-mail from the buyer with a header: Item Not Yet Received.  The buyer asked "Have you shipped my item, I've not received it yet?"  I responded that I had been paid on a Sunday and planned to ship it that day -- I then received the second and last e-mail from the buyer asking for a tracking number -- later that day I e-mailed them the USPS tracking number.

  I paid for USPS priority shipping with insurance and signature confirmation.  The watch was delivered to the Brooklyn address on November 16th and a notice was left since no one was at home to sign for the parcel.  To my regret I learned only much later that the package was picked up by the recipient on November 17, 2011 at the Beth Page Post Office in Brooklyn.  The postal clerk scanned the insurance label but forgot to scan the signature confirmation label.  The tracking number posted on the eBay listing was from the signature confirmation label and even a month later in error still shows "out for delivery in Brooklyn 11/16/11."

  Over a period of weeks I used the USPS website to track this parcel and when it kept showing "out for delivery" I could only assume that the recipient had not picked it up.  I e-mailed the buyer thru the eBay messages system on 11/18 and 11/21/11 asking them to retrieve this parcel, with no response.  Over the next 10-12 days I made repeated calls to the post office's main customer service phone number and had return calls from a manager at my local post office in Virginia.  I was repeatedly told that the parcel was in a pile of items to be returned to their senders as unclaimed.

  On December 4, 2011 this buyer filed a false "item not received" claim thru eBay and 2 days later escalated this to a PayPal claim, requesting refund of the purchase price.  At that point I made a last phone call to the post office and a customer service manager in VA fax'd me a copy of the insurance scan that was done in Brooklyn when the parcel was picked up, this document clearly showed "delivered."

  I fax'd this insurance delivery reciept to PayPal on Friday December 9th and made a followup phone call to PayPal to make sure it was received.  On Sunday 12/11/11 I received an e-mail from PayPal telling me that they had decided this case in favor of the buyer in China.  I couldn't believe this decision, the buyer's actions clearly showed that their dispute was a scam.  They never returned any of my e-mails after the watch was shipped, they waited 18 days from the shipping date to file a claim, and their USA representative had picked up the watch in person.

  I phoned PayPal shortly after receiving their dispute decision, to file an appeal, the $71.50 payment had been returned to this scamming buyer even though I'd provided proof of delivery.  Shortly afterward I received an e-mail telling me that PayPal had reversed their decision in my favor -- and they had sent a "courtesy" e-mail to this buyer asking me to refund this payment back to me.

  Needless to say this buyer has not and obviously will not contact me, nor return the payment.  I called PayPal to find out why they took back my funds after putting them on hold without my prior authorization, and yet didn't have the ability to take the funds back from the buyer.  I was then advised that once they had refunded a buyer they could only request this refund from the buyer, and would not or could not take the money back.

  I waited to post eBay feedback on this transaction until the PayPal case was concluded, and have now noted that this buyer falsely claims "item not received" in order to get their money back for items that they purchased and received.  The main reason that this buyer was able to scam eBay and PayPal was the failure of the Brooklyn postal clerk to scan the signature confirmation label on the parcel -- this would have marked the item as "delivered" on the USPS website and prevented this buyer from filing a claim for "not received.  This buyer had recently run an identical scam on two other eBay member who have posted feedback regarding their experiences with identical  false "item not received" claims.


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Comment by Mark D Swartz on March 10, 2012 at 11:21pm

If you've taken the time to read my post, or even find it since it is now aged, the end result of this litany is that the Post Office has recently refunded me $69.15 by check -- the amount that this item sold for on eBay.  My local Post Office manager prodded me to file a claim for service not received and I was pleasantly surprised to get this check.  This demonstrates the benefit of purchasing insurance for items shipped to eBay buyers.

Comment by Mark D Swartz on December 15, 2011 at 8:48pm


  Thank you for reading my long litany, what I've experienced with this situation is people telling me lies or half truths.  It began with the Post Office; the reason the buyer won this item not received claim is that USPS took 5 days to tell me that my eBay item had been delivered, for 5 days they led me to believe that it was still at the Post Office waiting to be returned to me.  I believe that they knew instantly why the tracking number for the signature confirmation showed as "out for delivery" but wanted to hide the fact that the postal employee had failed to obtain a signature from the recipient.  On the 5th day a local customer service agent in Virginia e-mailed me the insurance delivery receipt, I immediately fax'd it to PayPal but there was a delay in them reading it.  They closed the case in favor of the buyer on a Sunday, 2 days after I had fax'd proof of delivery.  I phoned PayPal on Sunday and a rep. could see an image of my fax and very soon after granted my appeal in my favor.  I was later advised that once PayPal has refunded money back to a buyer they do not or cannot retrieve my funds -- they told me to contact this buyer which I at first hesitated to do.  I finally sent an e-mail to the buyer knowing that they would not respond, and then posted the feedback that you can see on their eBay profile.  If you look thru the most recent 10 feedback comments you can see that this buyer has scammed 3 sellers in the last month, and maybe others who might be hesitant to file public feedback.

  I called eBay and PayPal and reported this buyer, however if you look at all of their posted feedback this member has repeatedly done the same INR scam.  It seems that they do this in cycles, with many good feedbacks and then a group of false INR claims.  I've filed a complaint on the USPS website, for their failure to deliver a service that I paid for, namely signature confirmation, which ended up costing me $71.50.  I also hold eBay liable for allowing this buyer to persist in scamming honest and ethical members in the USA. 

  Perhaps the reason that PayPal cannot return the funds is the fact that the buyer is a resident of China and PayPal cannot removed funds from a foreign bank?


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