Edmonton Police investigating online marketplace fraud series

Edmonton, Alberta – The Edmonton Police Service is alerting citizens to a series of frauds involving high-end and custom-built computers and related hardware offered for sale through Kijiji and Facebook Marketplace.

Between Feb. 26 and 27, 2021, Northeast Division received three reports of a suspect who is reportedly targeting people selling high-end and custom-built PCs and parts. In each occurrence, the buyer and seller arrange a contactless purchase where the item is to be left on a doorstep or other outdoor location for the seller to pick up. In one occurrence, it was reported that the suspect took possession of the item and left on foot without making payment. In the other two occurrences, it was reported that the suspect took the item, but sent an e-transfer that was later discovered to be invalid.

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File Photo – Social Media

The incidents have all occurred in northeast Edmonton and are believed to be related.

Sellers arranging contactless purchases are advised to receive payment and ensure the payment is valid before giving the property to the buyer. It is also recommended that the property not be left unattended, and that the seller visually confirms that the property has been received by the buyer. This can be done from the safety of a residence or vehicle. More meeting safety tips are available on the EPS website.

Investigators are asking anyone who suspects they may be being targeted in a similar way through online marketplaces like Kijiji or Facebook to take a screen shot of the suspect’s account/profile information and contact the EPS at 780-423-4567 or #377 from a mobile phone. Anonymous information can be submitted to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at www.p3tips.com/250.

Edmonton Police Service

MRU #: 21R020

“Dedicated to Protect, Proud to Serve”

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