Victim Location 92507
Total money lost $4,000
Type of a scam Counterfeit Product
I was called and told a 3rd party travel company wanted to purchase our Pueblo Bonito timeshare. The reason they described was detailed and sounded legitimate. I was then contacted by the above law firm to do paperwork. I looked up their website and googled the sites, all appear legitimate. After I signed papers to begin the sale, I was contacted by a "pueblo bonito member services person". He told me they were sorry to see me sell, wondered if there were any problems. Warned me not to sign until money had come through, etc. I got his pueblo bonito number. When I called it, the menu was exact to the real pueblo bonito phone. I asked many questions, I was not giving any money except a transfer fee. I called pueblo bonito (the real one), they did tell me a transfer fee was involved. Because I was paying that to pueblo bonito and not the travel company or the law firm, I felt it was legitimate.
We wire transferred the fee of a few thousand and were called by the law firm that it had gone through and payment would come in 2 days. Then I was notified in 2 days that payment was being held by a bank for wire transfer because a hold was placed by the Mexico SAT (like the IRS) for capital gains taxes. The only way to get the money was to pay the taxes. This is when I called the lawyer, she assured me this was not usual but there was nothing she could do. I called the real pueblo bonito number and asked to cancel the transfer, to refund the fee. I was notified they never received the funds and the number/emails from "pueblo bonito" were all false. What angered me is they said they have had other problems with this scam and yet it is still around. Upon deeper investigation, I realized the phone number, the emails that all looked like and sounded like the real pueblo bonito were not. The wire transfer bank based on a real bank in New York but was false. Even the email sent to me from the SAT.gov for the taxes was close but not real. These people are using all the marketing tools from these companies and mimicking them very convincingly. They are liars to the end. Even in my last conversation with the "lawyer", she assured me the money was there if the taxes were paid. It’s like they believe it themselves.