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Kovaks Street Scam Forums • View topic - Apartment Scammers

Apartment Scammers

Scammed in Barcelona? Share your stories here.

Moderators: UnHab, terrycojones, lenox

Apartment Scammers

Postby KOVAKS on Fri Sep 19, 2008 10:56 am

Contributed by Bob Katie on 29 March 2006:

[I wasn't sure what to make of the following. Of course it does sound like a scam. Before deciding to include the name and email of the purported scammer, I searched for it with google and found a couple of hits (e.g., this one), so the name is already out there. Of course I have no idea if this person is actually a scammer, but it would be negligent not to include the name and email. If you're looking for an apartment and you get contacted by Carol Brett, you can make up your own mind (and feel free to let me know what happens).

Update, April 18 2006:The Carol Brett scam has now been reported again, this time for an apartment in Germany. See here.

Update, April 24 2006:Carol Brett has just popped up offering a place to rent in Amsterdam. I have no details yet.

Terry]

this may not be a new scam in bcn, but it is not listed on your site so i hope it might save a few unsuspecting decent people from being ripped off. Firstly,i live here and am not a naive tourist wanting to complain about bcn.

OK, this is how it works...................................................................

You are looking to rent an apartment,so you place a want ad on Loquo bcn{the biggest and most used site for property,jobs,etc in bcn}saying apartment wanted in bcn.

your inbox fills up with offers of accomodation at stupid rental prices as is normal here,you view a couple of filthy,tiny,places with prices massively inflated by agencies/administrators and begin to lose hope.All the time you see ads for beautiful apartments out of reach to a normal working couple who can only afford,say..1000e a month.

Then it happens,you recieve an e-mail from a lady wanting to let an apartment which belongs to her "father in law" It is very well written in english,and has pictures attached of a place which looks clean,spacious,secure etc.

She explains that her relative has just retired and is going to tour africa for a year,so you can rent the place for as long as you wish.the rent is much cheaper than everything you have seen so far,and they only want 500e deposit,instead of 2/3/4 months in advance{which is normal here} You get real excited,reply to the ad,to arrange a viewing,and are told,they have someone looking at the place later today,but you can come tomorrow if they dont take it.Obviously you are very dissapointed,they cut the conversation short because they are preparing to take "pops",to the airport,but at the last minute they tell you that you sound like nicer people than the others and if you want,you can look at it first,and arrange to meet you at Bcn airport,where they are seeing off "pops" who would like to meet the people who are going to live in his house and get the deposit. then they will drive you to the apartment.

The "lady" that sends you the e-mail calls herself Carol Brett and her e-mail address is carolbret222@yahoo.com Fortunately i have seen enough nigerian scams not to have been caught by this.

I have lived and worked in seven large capital cities around the world,some with much worse reputations than here, and i would say without doubt that Bcn is the worst.

I am sure this will be deleted,but i have to say,my advice to travellers is DONT COME HERE!

the police turn a blind eye to visitors being robbed every day,unless you are rich enough to live in a rich,uptown area,it is always a risk to walk the streets,the city is filthy,and you can never let your wife walk anywhere alone. Contract of employment is the only reason for staying longer. There are some great things here,but they DO NOT outweigh the bad. Lets tell visitors the truth.

[I replied to the above asking what would happen next, supposing one did show up at the airport. Bob answered as below. Terry.]

Usually goes like this,

1. meet nice lady and "father in law" at Bcn airport,both well dressed/spoken,give pops 500e deposit,which he gladly accepts whilst imploring you to look after the apartment. You follow "Carol" to the car which is driven by her very large "brother" also very friendly,for the drive to the apartment. Then one of the following.

* A. Told to get lost at first quiet corner
* B. forced to hand over all cash/valuables and thrown out at first quiet corner
* C. taken to remote cashpoint forced withdraw etc.
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