Darien woman loses $1,600 to internet scam attempting to buy a puppy
DARIEN — A 21-year-old Darien woman was scammed out of $1,600 while attempting to purchase a puppy online.
On Jan. 11, the victim visited the website of a person claiming to be a breeder with English bulldog puppies for sale. The woman submitted an inquiry, expressing interest in buying a puppy from the site. The next day, she received an email from someone using the address firstname.lastname@example.org responding to her inquiry. After exchanging texts and emails, the woman sent $650 via Western Union to a person in Texas for the puppy.
Police said, the woman then received a phone call from a man with what she described as an “Indian accent.” He said she needed to send an additional $950 for the shipping crate, delivery insurance and other delivery costs, but 95 percent of the money would be returned upon delivery of the dog. The woman sent the additional money to another person in Texas.
When the woman did not receive the dog, she tried to contact the seller, but her texts, emails and phone calls went unanswered. When a family member tried to call the breeder’s number, he reached a man who told them to send another $1,300. They declined to send the money.
The woman reported the incident to police Jan. 14. An investigation revealed both transfers were picked up near Euless, Texas, but Western Union will not release the actual location where the money was picked up.
This is the site used in the scam: www.darleyenglishbulldogs.com. Police are still investigating whether it’s a fake site or if someone took over the site of a legitimate breeder.