Sevier County couple scammed out of over $1,000 trying to buy car lift off eBay

Investigations

SEVIER COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — eBay is considered a safe place to order and sell a variety of products, but scammers are taking advantage of the online marketplace. Unsuspecting customers don’t learn about their loss until it’s too late, and when they try to contact the seller, the online site has been taken down.

Despite numerous attempts to get a refund, or the car hoist they ordered delivered, Lyn Meadows has been unsuccessful. It’s not every day that someone orders a hoist that can lift 10,000 pounds, but a check of consumer sites across the country shows others have fallen victim to this scam.

Meadows showed us her husband’s garage where he remodels older cars. He’s a welder and was planning to place a car lift within the garage, but it never arrived.

They ordered the lift through eBay from an online site on January 10, using a credit card through their PayPal account.

On January 14, an email was sent confirming the car lift has been delivered, but it wasn’t there. Meadows says, “We called FedEx and had a message left saying the item was delivered to a place in Sevierville and that wasn’t our house.”

The item sent by FedEx was delivered to this office building in Sevierville. Neither Meadows nor her husband have ever been to the building. She says, “It turns out that tracking number is the same tracking number that eBay has given us for this package.”

A package arrived, but it wasn’t the car lift, it was medicine. Meadows says at that point, she called VISA and they froze the transaction in order to investigate. “We had to write letters, emails faxes and we did it four times. Finally, VISA said it looks like it is a true order.”

That means that the order had been sent and delivered, but it was not the car lift. Meadows says they won the case initially, and eBay said they had won the case, but then after asking to get compensated or have the car lift delivered, they said it’s been over 30 days, “that’s the way it works. That if was over 30 days, they would not refund me any money.”

Meadows adds she began challenging the purchase within days of FedEx delivering the package of medicine to Sevierville. “If we can’t get it, I would like to be refunded the money that we paid for it.”

After repeated attempts to reach the seller, the post was removed from eBay due to fraudulent activity. “They ultimately said I won the case. So it seems like, they should be able to refund me the money or provide me the product.”

WATE 6 On Your Side contacted eBay but has not heard back yet. Meadows believed she had all of her bases covered: she used her credit card for the transaction, reported the missing car lift within days after it was supposed to be delivered, sent emails and provided all the requested information to eBay, VISA, PayPal and FedEx.

However, she’s received no refund for the nearly $1,000 car lift. She regrets not ordering from someone local.

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