Scam warning - return of PayPal payment

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If someone has refunded your Paypal payment and suggested you pay via some other mechanism, then DON'T!

I have just been scammed for £800+ on an ebay purchase and am kicking myself, because I actually had my doubts before completing the transaction.

In a nutshell - I won the auction and paid via PayPal. A day or two later, I received a refund of the entire amount (minus PayPal transaction fee) from the PayPal account to which I had paid the money. On the same day, I received an email from the seller explaining that there had been recently been some problems with his PayPal account and he had therefore quickly returned the money whilst he could. The seller suggested that I could still pay by personal cheque or bank transfer if I wanted the item, or could pull out of the sale. I was very keen on the item (an antique paperweight - with hindsight it was too good to be true) but was a little suspicious of the financial arrangements. The emails from the seller all seemed very genuine, and he came accross as a "nice old chap". His ebay feedback was 100% positive accross approx 40 transactions (buying and selling) over a period of more than 2 years. I searched "ebay scams" on google to see if this action of returning PayPal fees was a recognised scam, and found nothing...

With slight trepidation, I arranged the bank transfer, half expecting to hear nothing more from the seller, and was very relieved to find our email correspondence continued, including discussion of delivery arrangements, and an email with the shipping code for the delivery.

The package arrived this morning - it is the right size and weight of box, but contains only graphite powder and lots of small bits of broken glass. There is absolutley no way that the broken glass resembles the original paperweight, and I can therefore only conclude that this is an elaborate fraud.

I am proceeding via PayPal and ebay resolution processes, but suspect the fraudster has been too clever for me to able to recoup the money.



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