Craigslist scam leaves family of 4 homeless
A woman who sent her rent check to a realtor in Nigeria is now homeless and trying to avoid living out of her car.
Renata Cox moved to from her native Michigan down to Nashville this month in an effort to find a better life for her three children. The first thing she wanted to find was a house for the four to live in, so she went to Craigslist and started searching in the area, eventually finding a great four-bedroom house in Nashville's Donelson neighborhood.
But the house proved too good to be true. After negotiating with an out-of-state landlord, and checking out the place after a friend of the realtor opened it up for her, she came to learn that the house was not owned by the man who claimed to own it at all. In fact, the man behind the Craigslist posting had nothing to do with real estate whatsoever.
He was a scam artist, living in Nigeria, who somehow coerced Cox into sending $1,100 via MoneyGram to his native country, giving her nothing in return.
Cox learned about the scam when she showed up on moving day only to find another woman on the property who claimed to be the landlord.
"She asked me what the man's name was and I told her," Cox told a local news affiliate. "She was like, 'We don't even know that man.'"
Now, Cox and her three kids are living in a car, looking for a home and considering a return to Michigan.
Just because someone says, 'Send it to George in Alabama,' he doesn't have to be in Alabama," detective Michael Park told reporters. "He can be in Nigeria or wherever to pick up the money."
In this case, yes, Nigeria was the place.
Photo via Bixentro/Flickr