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Port Chester Teenager Loses $200 in Craigslist Job Scam

Police: Listing for babysitter was bait for online fraud scheme.

A 17-year-old Port Chester girl is out $200 as a result of a fraud scheme that used a Craigslist help wanted ad for a babysitter as the bait, according to Port Chester police.

The teen replied to a job listing posted by a person who purported to be a resident of the United Kingdom who was moving to the United States and needed a babysitter. The teen was contacted by a man who asked her to help set up a home in the U.S.

Police said the girl was asked to cash a check for $2,600, part of which would go to a landlord. When the girl received the check, she realized something was wrong because the check was drawn on a bank from Texas and was linked to other parties in Vermont and Connecticut.

By the time the girl realized she was the victim of a scam, police said she has already given over $200 of her own money.

Craigslist warns of such scams. Here's an example of an actual e-mail that was part of a scam:

Hello,

I am looking for caring and honest person to watch my 3 years old daughter while I work, during our stay in the state and a friend introduced craiglist.com to me, I was searching on Childcare Babysitter, when your Ad post pumped up as a Childcare and Babysitter, am interested in your service as my babysitter/Childcare.. My Little daughters is (Mellina ) , I would like you to watch over her while i am at work in your Location , I reside in United Kingdom,I will be coming to the States in about two weeks time , Cos I just got a contract with Boss Perfume fashion industry down there, I work as a model and the contract will last for a month, the duration of our service wil be from 10am to 5pm, monday thru friday, I would like to know if she will be taken care of in your childcare centre/Home, or the hotel room where i would be lodging, It's Okay by me, any of this ways.

My little daughter (Mellina ) is 3 years old, I will be waiting patiently for your email indicating the cost of everything,I mean the price for your service,how long you will be available to take care of her,how much u charge per week. she is just three years old as i have said earlier and i will be glad to update you and make the payment in advance to show you how serious i am. So please get back to me as soon as you can if you will be able to handle her and take very good care of her for me. 

Email me back
Your's faithfully

No arrests have been made in connection with the scam in Port Chester.

Cristina Calabrese November 09, 2012 at 06:44 PM
I've seen this EXACT scam e-mailed to me from Craigslist advertising as well - multiple times. Good things to look out for when recognizing if something is a scam: -it's written in poor, broken, improper English -they have a sense of urgency or need immediate action -vague or non-specific stipulations (i.e.: he doesn't seem to care where his daughter will stay, easy to trust) -the origin is from another country Always ask for more details & specific information. If you think it's a scam - ignore the e-mail. Don't even bother replying to it.
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