Consumer Fraud Reporting
room, apartment or house Rental Scams - Sandra Martinez, Spain / Africa
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eBay and Classified Ad Scams:
Scammers Posing as Potential Tenants or Renters
room, apartment or house

Scams and scammers using these names: Sandra Martinez
"I'm am not in the states right now, i am presently in West Africa ."

Are you looking to rent or lease a room, apartment or house? Did "Sandra Martinez" claiming to be from Spain contact you? Note that this person says:

"I'm am not in the states right now, i am presently in West Africa .". 

That's a clue to a scam right there!

Here are the clues that this is a scam:

  1. The renter claims that he or she is not currently in your country.
  2. They want to pay by check or money order
  3. They want to include extra money in the check
  4. The potential tenant wants you to send the extra money from the check by Western Union to someone else.  Western Union wires and Moneygrams are not only untraceable, they're irretrievable.  Once the recipient picks them up (which can be done at ANY Western Union office in the world), the money is gone, gone, gone!
  5. The renter is willing to rent without even seeing the property.
  6. Often, the writing is poor, also.  Often, is it not pathetically bad, it's just plain strange. It looks like it was written by someone who is not a native English-speaker, and writes very rarely in English. This is very typical of scammers, who largely are in Nigeria and have little formal education and probably none in English.
  7. Scammers also often babble on about irrelevant issues (their mother, their family, their life history, their hobbies, their religous fervor, a sob story about being an orphan or having survived abuse or a terrible disease) none of which have any significant bearing in the business transaction. Why they do this, we can't say.  Perhaps in their sick little Third World minds, this engenders more trust.  It is a clue, though since westerners (rational, educated ones) rarely do this.
  8. Their name does not match their culture or native country - for example, how many Spanish women do you know, named "Sandra"; or Africans named "Fred", etc. It's another attempt to sound familiar, to "con".

An actual email that illustrate this type of CraigsList scam:

Any highlighted passages below are to draw your attention to typical scam clues:


Email 1 - from the victim to CFR:

(I found an identical posting on another roommate site and i saw multiple entries of people that had fallen vitim to this.)

Email 2 - from the scammer:

Sandra Martinez [ charles5050a@yahoo.com ] Hi There,                          

           How re you doing? I hope all is well. I'm Sandra Martinez, am 26 yrs old and Am originally from Barcelona, Spain . Graduate of Huelva University on the Costa de la Luz ,

I have a master degree in  interior fashion and I work as a professional fashion designer. I moved to  , AZ two year ago for work and that's where am living. I'm am not in the states right now, i am presently in West Africa .

I am currently working on contract for a company call (African Family Home Fashions) here in West Africa ( Nigeria ) which the contract will be ending soon. I will be returning to the states in two weeks time and I don't want to go back to my where am living in because my house rent has expired there.

I enjoy traveling, It is very interesting to get more knowledge about the new countries, new people and traditions. It's great to have such a possibility. As i was searching through the web i saw the advert of your room. I would like to know maybe it's still available because I'm extremely interested in it. Here are the questions i would like to know about the room before planing to move in to the following questions below:

A}I will like to know the major intersection nearest your neighborhood.like shopping mall,Churches,bus line e.t.c

B}I will like to know the total cost for the my initial move as in first month rent and if you accept deposit.

C}I will like to know if there is any garage or parking space cos I will have my own car come over.

D}I will like to have the rent fee per month plus the utilities.

E}I will like to have the description of the room, size, and the equipments in there.

F}I will also like to know Your payment mode.

G}I will like to know if I can make an advance payment ahead my arrival that will be stand as a kind of commitment that I am truly coming over and for you to hold  the room down for me.  I will be very glad to have all this questions answered with out leaving a stone unturned...

Now a little about myself;I am from Barcelona, Spain :

that means i am Spanish and had all my education in Spain . I am 26yrs old and very much single,the only child of my only parent, my mother alive, i lost my father and my only brother years ago while i was still a kid in an auto accident.I am currently living with my mom who's a catholic volunteer worker,but also manages her antique business. She is a volunteer at the sister's of the eucharistic heart of jesus convent,here in Barcelona , Spain . I have been wanted to relocated to the US longtime ago even while i was a little girl growing up and my mom is in support.It'

been a long dreamed come true for me when i finally settled in the US now. I have chosen your city for me to live when i arrive.

I am easy to get along with and well mannered. I do not use people's items without permission and consideration. Kindly get back to me ASAP with the your monthly rent and the deposit i need to pay to enable you turn down other interested parties and keep the place for me until i arrive,because i will like to pay for the deposit before my arrival and i will like to know the total amount the rent for a whole year would be,as i am more interested in a long term lease,but still open to any form of lease you want.

But i will like to pay the deposit first of all before i arrive to show my seriousness and so that you can hold the place for me until i arrive.I am single as i said and i am not attached to anyone at the moment.

I do part time modeling; i call myself an amateur though,LOL just something i take as a hobby and also i have a masters degree in interior fashion which i bagged from the Huelva University on the Costa de la Luz in Spain. I will be looking to pick up Fashion Designer jobs once i arrive in ur city, Fashion Designer is my life and i love it. I am new living all alone as i have lived with my mom alone in the past but i have no doubts in my mind about my ability to live peacefully with as i was raised to be a lover of peace.

A friend just introduced me to this thing and i really wish that i am able to find the good cultured kind of Place i am looking for here. I hope i am doing it right anyways.LOL Well,i think we will get along well because am a easy going person who respects ones privacy,like i said i don't do drugs or smoke but i drink only occasionally,i strongly believe there will be any problems living with me as i was raised by strong catholic Christian parents and have imbibed such good qualities from childhood. I will love to see your pis and those of the place as well.I'll be so glad if you can reserve the room for me and remove all your the adverts about the place as I'll love to rent the place. Get back to me ASAP,Here is my screen name you can also meet me online now(sandra_marty98@yahoo.com)Or MSN sandra_marty202@hotmail.com

Thanks and have a good time.

Warmest Regards,

Sandra

 


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Names used by scammers in the examples on this page and others often belong to real people and businesses who often have no knowledge of nor connection to the scammer's use of their name and information.  Sample scam emails and other documents are copies of the scam to help potential victims recognize and avoid it.  You should presume that any names used and presented here in a scam are either fictitious or used without their legitimate owner's permission.
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