Gephardt: Fraudsters Target Utah Job Seekers With Reshipping Scam
BOUNTIFUL, Utah – While unemployment has eased since the pandemic started, many folks are still searching online for their next job. A Bountiful woman thought she found a perfect job for making some easy money, but it turns out she hired on with a criminal enterprise.
Lindsey wanted to earn a little extra scratch, so she went job hunting on several online job boards.
“I’ve got student loans and stuff,” she said.
A seemingly perfect fit soon showed up in an email.
“Hey, we thought you’d be a really good person as our warehouse coordinator,” Lindsey said about the opportunity.
No warehouse work was needed. She could do it all from home.
They said she would be sent boxes of merchandise, and all she had to do was print new shipping labels emailed to her, slap them on, and take the boxes to the post office.
“We’ll pay you $2,000 a month,” Lindsey said. “And every package that you send out, you get an extra $40 for it. So, I was like, okay, this sounds like the easiest job ever.”
That easiest job soured quickly. Lindsey had just received package number two when a very angry woman whose name appeared on the original shipping label, called.
“She thought that someone that lived here was trying to charge (her) credit card to buy electronics,” Lindsey recounted. “I was like, ‘No, I promise you – no one here is trying to do that.”
Lindsey said she contacted her new boss and was told this was all perfectly normal. Lindsey did not buy that explanation, so she called the KSL Investigators.
And indeed, she was caught up in a reshipping scam.
Those boxed items were stolen or bought with stolen debit or credit numbers. By reshipping them, Lindsey unknowingly covered up the fraud – becoming an accomplice in the scheme.
“Be wary of everything you’re looking at,” said Lt. Troy Killian with the Bountiful Police Department about searching for online jobs.
His agency now has the two packages Lindsey received as they investigate.
Killian warned people to research any online opportunity before signing up because the bad guys are often out of reach.
“The Feds will take some cases that are over a certain amount of money,” he said. “But most times, they’re gone.”
As for Lindsey, she is still dealing with an angry employer wanting those packages back.
“They’re saying that, ‘We’re going to take legal action against you,’” she said. “You’re an illegal company – so have fun.”
Lindsey put the kibosh on this before she got her first paycheck. It is almost certain that the check from her fake boss would have been fake, too.