Local News

Police: Woman Used eBay To Defraud Customers

Posted March 12, 2004

— Police say a Raleigh woman used the Internet to defraud customers.

Tammy Nesmith, 35, said she sold urban brands like Baby Phat, Parasuco and Sergio Valente on the Internet, but some of her customers are not happy.

Garner police investigator Cathy Wood said unsatisfied customers sent her the pictures. She said the patches and stitching are telltale signs of fakes instead of "100 percent legit" as Nesmith claimed in her eBay ad. Police arrested Nesmith Wednesday.

"I have complaints from three victims in Alabama, Pennsylvania and one in Quebec, Canada, who never got their order or got fake clothing and merchandise," Wood said.

Two other buyers are in Cary. According to warrants, one customer sent Nesmith more than $4,000. Another customer sent her $1,100. Both got nothing in return.

Nesmith said she used to sell clothes and handbags and other items out of a store in Garner. She was at the store for about two months. When Nesmith decided to leave, she said that is when her problems started.

Nesmith said the items sold on eBay were from her store and were authentic. She said she has U.S. Postal Service receipts that prove one of the buyers received her merchandise.

Nesmith will soon appear in court, but in the meantime, Wood said she has a message for people buying on the Web.

"Buyer beware," she said.

If you shop online, there are ways to protect yourself.

  • Get to know the site and what protections it offers. Not all sites are the same.
  • Research the seller. A quick Internet search might tip you off to trouble.
  • Save all of your transaction information, so you have some recourse.
  • The Federal Trade Commission has a special

    Web site

    to walk you through Internet shopping.

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