Caradise Investigates: Anatomy of a Car Sale Scam Part II: Dude, Where’s My Car?

So, the trap had been carefully set. Fake Website, Fake Reviews, Fake Address, Fake AutoCheck report but the car VIN was real.  I marveled at all of the effort to seem legit. Why they picked a 2014 Jaguar XKR? Who knows? I was the perfect victim who found the perfect bait.

So, first, I decided to call. I noticed the number was a Google number only taking voicemails. Then, I got a call back from a different number in NYC. On the other line there was a lady with a beautiful British voice from a lady perfectly named Emily Watson. Yes, like the actress!

‘Yes, we have the vehicle’. She replies sounding like an older Mary Poppins. I ask about the buying process. She mentions that I need to register on the site and that starts the process. They will take the offer to the ‘owner’ and if accepted, I have to pay within 24 hours via bank wire. The wire instructions will come with a bill of sale. I asked if the car is titled in California or New York. She doesn’t know. She’ll check.

That’s it.  I see that the confirmation form only asks for name, address, email and phone, price and the URL where the car is showing. No ID, no drivers license, not anything that might make me stop for a second from replying and soon wiring them $30,000.

I ask how does their 7 day return guarantee work? Of course, it is great, amazing, so friendly and it needs no reason. You can return the car within 7 days if not ‘satisfied’ and they will ship back ‘free of charge’.  Wow, I think. How nice of them. Maybe I really should buy the scam car, no?

Then I asked about shipping, and they also say the can handle that, apparently the cost to ship a vehicle from NYC to the Bay Area is only $1,008. (Truly a deal, The real rate wouldn’t be any less than $1,600 and would likely average $2,000) They will share pics of the title if interested only and register. I should really take this scam deal. The cheap shipping is closing the (scam) deal here.  Also makes it easy to stop asking questions, like: where is the car right now?

OK, I want to see the car besides the posted pics, so I asked for 3 more pictures, the dashboard, the engine and center console, plus can I see the title? at least the top of it?  and I receive 3 of the same old posting pictures. Is the car registered in California? No, the car is titled in NYC, the owner apparently moved to NYC from California, but the car pics had hidden Arizona plates. The real VIN shows up in a sale a few years ago in Arizona. So, where is the car? What state is the title from?

Hi Frank,

As per our previous conversation, the car is on consignment and located
in New York. I have included the links to more pictures of the interior
below. I can also confirm that the car’s title registered in New York.

If you would like to move forward with the purchase please head over to
register at the link provided below.

Once registered, we will provide you with bill of sale and the invoice.
Upon receiving payment confirmation we will ship this car out within 24
hours and provide you with live tracking details. As for delivery as I
have mentioned the shipping fee is $1,008 plus the car’s asking price
of  $29,835. The car does come with 7 day money back guarantee which
starts on the day of delivery. So if you weren’t satisfied with the car
we will issue you a full refund and collect the car free of charge.

Let me know if you have any further questions!

Man, this scammer is so good, polite and efficient. Not even Carvana moves this fast.

I submitted my ‘registration’ on a Thursday afternoon, and sure enough, Friday by 7am I get a very official set of pdf documents via email which represents the bill of sale and the wire instructions.  I noticed that the ‘Bill of Sale’ does not properly identify the car (No VIN) Doesn’t mention the status of the title, and also it does NOT state the current mileage. Also, they want the ‘reference number’ on the payment to be some random ‘invoice number’ instead of the vehicle description or VIN number

Other missing important info: the current owner/’seller’ – I only get his name: “Patrick Doyle”, no address at all. No Identification. Nothing else.

The document even has some sort of ‘official’ seal of PAC MOTO Traders corporation, featuring their fake corporation certificate number.

I email back with those issues of the missing info that California will not like and ask where to send a mechanic for an inspection so I can send the money, I ask to get a call back.

I want another call, mainly to ask where the car is. So when I emailed back mentioning the issues above and that Id like to inspect the car, or at least get a video of the car starting or moving, I get this email:

Hi Frank,

Before we send you the updated invoice, bill of sale and the top portion of the title. Please clarify whether we’d be waiting for a mechanic to inspect the car before any payment is made? As we’re running out of time due to somebody viewing this car on Monday and we’re positive it will sell. If that is the case, then the mechanic would have to inspect the car tomorrow or we would have to cancel the invoice and bill of sale. Please confirm this by replying to this email address, thank you.


OMG, The car is getting SOLD Monday, you guys. What should I do? Should I go for the scam car? I mean, someone else will get scammed first or perhaps there is a real car is all this bullcrap, no? I don’t respond right away and I get another email in 20 min.

Emily emails me again, very helpfully mentioning the 7 day guarantee, remember? If I don’t like the car for whatever reason, they will take it back, across the country, at no cost. She’s basically saying: “You are a dumbass for not taking this no-risk deal”:


As I have previously mentioned, you’re still covered with the 7 day money back guarantee. Cars as such never last a week. If you’re registered, it is telling us that you’re committed but if you’re still wanting the car inspected we’re working backwards. If the car isn’t sold by Monday, feel free to schedule your inspection and once you’re happy with the inspection please only then register to move forward. Also please confirm that we can go ahead and cancel your invoice and bill of sale. Thanks!


I reply that if I cannot do an inspection or at least send me a video of the car starting, I will cancel but still again ask for the location of the mythical storage place, to send a mechanic to do a PPI on the car in case it doesn’t get “sold” Monday, and I get one last answer,

The invoice and bill of sale is now cancelled, whoever would be doing the inspection will have to attend our office first to sign disclosure and Health & Safety to be in the warehouse. Our office is 230 Park Avenue, 10169. Thanks!


So, apparently whoever has to do the PPI has to go to the center of Manhattan first, to sign a disclosure and then go to apparently this car is garaged. By the way, 230 Park Avenue is one of the most expensive office buildings in Manhattan. So this consignment operation really leaves enough profit for offices in Central Park. Ooooookay. Take my money plz, evidently you are really legit then.

So there you have it. There was never any car, or if there is, is somewhere in Arizona. Instead, despite my efforts to see the car, there were evasive answers. Certainly the fake bill of sale gave the game away, with how sloppy it was written. Perhaps a more careful scammer will go the extra mile to get real documents. For a while, I almost thought that perhaps there was a real car. That’s how good the scam was. I should’ve sent a fake wire receipt or something and continue the con.

But a less careful buyer would have fallen for this thing for sure. The amount of fakery is impressive and I’d imagine these become gypsy websites, disappearing into thin air when some poor soul wires them money under a new name and other fake cars and boats to sell. Caveat Emptor car buyers. Scammers never sleep.

Epilogue: OMG these guys! New scam is also another Jaguar! A Manual F-Type Maybe I should buy that one instead, no?



Francisco Guerrero

Dad, Founder, Techie, Obsessed Car Guy, Web3 Groupie, and some sort of savant are names I've been called. Fleet total: 1,500HP Writes @JoinTheCaradise

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