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David Cushman  says:

How to spot a conman

Conmen are trying to make thousands from those of us selling our bikes – and it's time for us to join together and hit back. Read this story and pass on the details to every motorcyclist you know (send it as a link if you prefer). Detective Constable Tim Hinks of the Met Police’s economic and specialist crime unit says getting the information to as wide an audience as possible is the key to beating the con. The fraud works like this. First, a potential buyer contacts you and agrees a price for your bike – but only by email. They never want...

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  • Posted 8 years ago (27 February 2007 14:16)

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Apr 04

Posts: 11

bonkey says:

nigeria conmen

some years ago(l8 90's) we got conned similar to this face to face in the ivory coast when an associate of mine whom my friend had known for a long time actually brought a 'security guard' to our hotel in full uniform and photo ID attached, verifying all this conner said. but the uniform was false etc. we lost £3000 between us( i originally said no way its bogus)funilly though my friends in Australia said it was a well known scam and was publicised in newpapers and tv

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Dec 05

Posts: 7

makrand says:


most, yes, most of the replies I got for my ad were conmen. It is probably going to get a lot worse. Easy is that their english is terrible. Don't risk it with anyone who won't come to see the bike. End of story.

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Oct 10

Posts: 183

toadhancocks says:


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Mar 07

Posts: 1

philtreefrog says:

New scammer

Just recieved an email for the bank draft shipping scam. The contact 'buyer' email is for all you out there getting emails from this person.

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Aug 11

Posts: 1

Conman still active

Philtreefrog mantions he has been contacted by a conman recently, well we have been e-mailed by the same person going by the name of Jasmine Gate <>but if someone promises to send you whatever sum you require without even seeing a popular bike such as our Fazer (of which there are quite a lot for sale) you have just got to be suspicious. Life isn't that easy I'm afraid...

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Apr 08

Posts: 7

foxchrisamr says:

I have also just received contact from this person, I have only recently placed my advert for the bike. If I get more details I will post their location. maybe a visit would help.
Another Email is

[This Reply has been modified by the Author]

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Aug 11

Posts: 1

sockeye says:


yes just to say old george alexander is trying his best only had my bike for sale for one day and he was there wanting to give me money for abike he had not even seen this person wants neutering

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Aug 11

Posts: 1

LonelyNodder says:


Have been trying to sell my bike and all I get is scammers saying they are interested in bike and will pay full asking price without even seeing it, who in there right mind does that.

Does MCN actually sell bikes for customers or are they just a collection of scammers pretending to be interested in bikes until they dupe someone into falling for this scam, I mean its not even a new thing is it, its been going on for years. Why has nobody been caught and this been publicised.

Anyway here's a few that have contacted me.

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Feb 06

Posts: 2

greekgreeny says:

Not all overseas enquiries are from Conmen

Just put my R1200 up for sale and received an email enquiry from Holland.  I was suspicious initially but he asked the right questions about my model and wanted more photos.  I checked his email and turned out to be a dealer, he made me a reasonable offer and paid in cash.  So if you get an equiry from don't necessarily dismiss it. :smile

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Feb 04

Posts: 24

harringtonpw says:

Combatting Conmen

Hi LonelyNodder,

Just to come back to you about what MCN does/doesn't do. Firstly, yes we do sell a lot of bikes :smile (see here for some testimonials).

We are also very aware of these scams, and actively publicize these scams to the seller on both the confirmation email we send out to sellers and on this page: We also forward these to trading standards, but as the scammers invariably live outside of the UK they are very limited in their actions.

In respect of stopping these scammers, we obviously try to block known scammers from contacting our advertisers, which we do work on (we have a blocked list of 450+ scam emails!!) - however as scammers change email addresses and/or IP locations it's impossible to cut these down totally without manually checking every response from them. We don't do this as we would need to dramatically increase the price of advertising in order to manually check each response, so this isn't a viable option - we are however already working on a more sophisticated automatic scam catcher which will be introduced in the next month or so.

As a general rule, if someone doesn’t ask specific questions about your bike, is happy to buy it unseen at full asking price, or wants to pay for it via an unusual or unwarranted way, please simply ignore.

I'd also like to re-iterate greengeeky's point that not all foreign buyers are dodgy. We're aware of a lot of dealers in Belgium, Netherlands and Germany who are keen to buy private English bikes, but the buyer's knowledge of the bikes in question and willingness to meet in person seperate these approaches from the "Dear friend I am, so lucky to find your bike for sale, please accept this cheque for more than the asking price and pay my shipping company the remainder..." style scams.

I hope this info helps. Sadly scammers do go through all online classified sites concentrating on high-value items, but please be assured that we're not blind to this, and are working on ever better methods to defeat these idiots.

If you have further questions, please feel free to email me ( or drop me a pm.



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