Have you ever wished that someone would randomly deliver free stuff to your doorstep? Well, you’re probably not the only one. Everybody loves free things. Problem is, there really isn’t any such thing as ‘free’ – not these days. So naturally, when Linda Hall and her daughter Amanda started having boxes of merchandise delivered to them, they became anxious and unsure about what exactly to do.
It started when Amanda accepted a friend request from a guy named Troy Luther on Facebook. He introduced himself as a command Sergeant Major and asked whether she wanted to be friends with him. Thinking that he would be “someone nice to talk to”, Amanda consented and they became fast friends. Eventually, the man claiming to be Troy Luther sent Amanda some flowers to her house – unknowingly the first of several, several packages. Having built up a trusting friendship with the girl, Luther then asked if she would help with a military donation program. This request opened the floodgates for several packages appearing at her doorstep, packages that were not addressed to her in the first place. The packages contained things such as headphones, shoes, and even laptops.
Of course, she was outright bewildered. Her obvious task was to send the packages to their rightful owners. But then she received a call from the Office Depot one day, informing her that the IP address of one of the laptops being sent to her had a suspicious IP address. Alarmed, Amanda called the police and informed them of what had been happening. It turns out that she was a victim of a variation of the ‘Nigerian Scam’, wherein items are purchased with a stolen or fake credit card and are thereafter shipped to a victim who would then be asked to ship these items abroad.
“I don’t want to get in trouble for something that I thought I was doing right, and I don’t want this stuff just sitting here in my house”, said Amanda, basically describing her dilemma in a nutshell.
Of course, Amanda and her mother are not in trouble for the part they played in the scam, but it caused them considerable anxiety nonetheless. Heaps upon heaps of boxes containing goods are currently piled inside their living room and she and her family are helping the authorities to have these goods returned.
Linda, tired of the whole fiasco, issued an advice that we should all take to heart: “Don’t accept anyone as a friend that you don’t know and don’t get involved in any situation that you don’t have proof that it is legitimate.”