Perth House sold In “Nigerian scam”

The scammers are getting  smarter and smarter. the most recent  scam to hit Perth  has hit ridiculous proportions with  a Perth man getting his house sold by scammers  somewhere in  Africa. The scammers managed to  sell the mans house using email and telephone  and conning a local real estate agent for a sum of $485,000.

House sold by scammers while australian man  was overseas

Obviously this is gong to put a fear in many “home owners” who  might just be heading out  on a holiday  or then work overseas as it happened in this case and come back to find their house sold and money disappeared overseas  somewhere  as it happened in this case.

Scams perth house sale  australia

Snr Sgt Heise  who was handling the case said “real estate agents and banks should always deal with original documents rather than copies”, which indicates  that there was possibly not enough care and checks done in the whole process of the sale.

Scammed using Email and Phone from overseas

Roger Milden hall who was the victim of such a scam , was working overseas in south Africa, when these scammers struck. He owned 2 properties  here in Perth  and they managed to sell one house  and was on the verge of settling the  second “house sale” when he came to know about it by  a chance call ( from overseas)  to one of his neighbors who   chatted to him about his house sale happening.

Reports from online news websites indicates that “absentee landlords”  are quite common nationally  and this was the first scam  of this sort , indicating that this was probably how the scam was worked

what is a Absentee landlord ?

Property owner who does not occupy his or her property and either rents it out or leaves it vacant, but does not abandon it. Also called absentee owner

The home owner said not enough due diligence was carried out on the authorization of the sale, since his alleged signature was "like that of a five-year-old", written out in un-joined lower-case letters. It also had a witness signature, with a stamp purporting to be from the High Commissioner of Lagos, Nigerian justice system. He said it was just too simple to get all his records, with details of his mortgage obtained for $35 from the Real Estate Institute of Australia. They also accessed his first wife’s death certificate to help authorize the sale and were able to source a copy of the title deed from Land gate.

ref :

Major crime squad detective Senior Sergeant Don Heise said the real estate agent was duped because scammers convincingly used email and phone calls to lead her to believe they were the owners. An investigation involving the Real Estate and Business Agents Supervisory Board (REBA) and the Settlement Agents Supervisory Board (SASB) is underway.

Filed Under: 20102011Australiaperth waPropertyWA

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  1. Real estate is a very complex industry. There are lots of fraud and scams along the way. One should be knowledgeable and experienced to avoid this kind of frauds.

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