Overpayment Cheque Scam from Dubai

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Over the last couple of weeks I have been the victim of an attempted Overpayment cheque scam. In such a scam a person or business enters into an agreement to purchase an expensive item or product you are selling, usually on the internet. They will send a cheque to your bank that vastly exceeds the amount agreed. The cheque is a forgery, but before it clears the fraudster will engage you in some long-winded explanation about how an overpayment was made and how you can refund most of the balance, usually keeping a tidy amount for yourself.

According to Hoax Slayer, such scams usually target “high-ticket” items like cars and electronic goods. In my case I was contacted by someone in Dubai, purrporting to be:

Dodgy purchase order from DubaiMustapha Habib
AL Garound Marketing Services
Plot 12 Shekh Quassim Way
Jebelalli Industrial Estate,
P.O.Box 14053
Dubai UAE .
Email: moozety101@yahoo.com

who wanted to purchase 120 Dovado USB Mobile Broadband Routers from me. From the outset my suspicion antennae were twitching for all of the following reasons:

  • he was using a Yahoo email address
  • he showed no interest in technical details about the product
  • from an early stage he was eager to get hold of my bank details including telephone number and address
  • he did not engage in any haggling over the price, quite the opposite in fact giving the impression he was prepared to pay over the odds for a large quantity
  • the manufacturer of the product is actually registered in Dubai – why deal with me instead of dealing with Dovado directly?
  • he told me he would be able to organise the shipping, which made the deal all the easier to conclude

Indeed although I quoted him a unit price of €75 per router, he sent a purchase order citing a unit price of €130. Nonetheless I invoiced him for €9,000 (120 routers at €75 each). On 28 September 2009, a postbank cheque for €55,500 arrived at our bank in Ennis.

As they say: “if something seems too good to be true, then it probably is”, so I googled Overpayment Cheque Scam and discovered that the above sequence of events fitted perfectly with the usual overpayment scam scenario.

whocallsmeFurthermore my contact in Dovado shared a useful anti-scam resource with me: http://whocallsme.com – it’s a site where users can log details and telephone numbers from attempted scams and dodgy telephone marketing practices.

When I enter the phone number from the fraudulent purchase order (+971 553655906) into this website there are reports of almost identical scams originating from that number.

As soon as I sussed that the whole affair was a scam I ceased responding to emails from the fraudster and I have forwarded all the salient details to the Dubai police…without any response from them as yet, I might add. As is routine procedure with such large cheques, the forgery was inspected by the bank’s fraud department, confirmed as a dud cheque and returned unpaid. At this stage I will not find out what tall tale was in store for me at the end of the scam, but I don’t care. I just wanted to document the experience to alert others.

Update 18 Oct 2009
The Dubai Police did respond and have said that they’ll take the “necessary action”.

Update 3 Dec 2009
Many thanks for all the comments posted so far. Given the steady stream of reports of attempted fraud from the same source and the fact that the fraudster(s) have a physical presence in the countries they are targeting, I passed on the details of this particular fraud to the UK’s National Fraud Authority by telephone (0300 123 2040). Eventually some arm of the law might take an interest in apprehending some of the individuals involved. Maybe. There’s a slight chance.

119 thoughts on “Overpayment Cheque Scam from Dubai”

  1. Hello everyone, same thing happened to us, in Italy. Offer for 3,136 Euro, received a check by mail for 41,300 Euro. Sender is:
    Bilal Mubarak.
    Umpire Palace.
    Office No.1, Mezzanine Floor,
    Al-Kuthban Building
    661 Sheikh Zayed Road,
    UAE.
    salesenquiries@umpire.com
    No telephone number provided.

    We will destroy the check with much pleasure. My comment is that scammers are becoming more difficult to discover. I mean this request could seem pretty ‘normal’ apart from the fact that there was no telephone number in the mail.

  2. They are starting to move about a bit, we have had another 2 in the past 12 weeks, both Scandinavia. 1 Norway which when put into Google Streetview was a wooden terraced house with a Volvo parked outside and a wheelie bin next to the front door. And the other Denmark using a company name that did exist but the address given did not and was waste ground. The tell tale give away is a gmail or yahoo email address, no telephone/fax number, and oh yes cleared fund in the bank with shipping 2 weeks later.

  3. We are car dealer, same situation, they has sent to our bank the letter by DHL with bank cheque overprice 450.000€, ofcourse the letter is without name, the DHL can not send post without name of the sender, we involve the DHL of Dubai to provide us urgently name, surname or company about the sender, otherwise we will denouce the DHL as a criminal organization too, the company who asked us the invoice for the car is the following:

    HILLTOP GENERAL TRADING LLC
    335 SHEIKH ZAYED RD
    JUMEIRAH
    DUBAI,UAE
    DAVID SCOTT
    tel 00971 52 9164039

    They are waiting the response of the bank cheque from us, they ask when they can come and pick up the car, in a few days we will send them an email and invite here to pick up the car….they will find a surprise.

  4. I’ve been contacted by a woman purporting to be christina ong. she wants to purchase a high value item of jewellery from us and insists on using two credit cards to split the costs over. She even sent me scans of the front and back of each card along with an ID with a photo and her address.however the address is one that comes up quite often when googling scams, its in singapore amd apparently its a forwarding address near the airport. I’ve sent an invoice via google checkout so I’ll see if anything transpires but will provide updates.

  5. Hello,

    1 month ago, our company receive the inquiry and after one week, order for sport equipment (we are producer). This guy tried to fool us. Company in Poland.
    System is the same: Order for 40.000 EUR, check for 77.600 EUR. Bank has check this payment possibility and find out, as check is false.

    Contacting from Dubai: Umpire Palace.
    email from sending information: umpire.trading@outlook.com
    email on order: salesenquiries@umpire.com
    tel. +971.559.2410.49
    address: Building 21/1, Industrial Area 3, Sharjah, Landmark: Near Caterpillar Showroom 22817, Sharjah, UAE.
    Person: on order was signed Bilal Mubarak wish scan sighned, but I was contacting with Rakeem McAra.
    Other address in contacting on email:
    Umpire Trading LLC
    Office No. 201, Arcade Bldg
    (Near GGICO Metro Station & Al Tayer Motors Showroom)
    2nd St – Dubai
    United Arab Emirates.

    Our policy and propably Interpol stared investigation in case. Be alert to the these scammers.
    Regards

  6. Some more fodder for the search engines. This is a scam.

    Receive from Khalid Murray

    CENTERPOINT GENERAL TRADING LLC
    Al Rashidiya Industrial Area,
    Street 79B,Century Building,
    Port Rahid Road,DUBAI. 00971
    UNITED ARAB EMIRATES.
    The Registration Number: {DXB/198174/AE}
    PHONE NUMBER : ++00971(557287519)
    FAX NUMBER : +971(4)6869529
    EMAIL:centerpointgeneraltradingllc@gmail.com

  7. Hi All,
    I received this email yesterday, very similar to what has been posted already and obviously still up to their tricks:

    Good day to you, want to make an enquiry about the purchase of these
    order in which one of my clients is in need to purchase but fortunately
    discovered it from you. I will want you to send to me the discounted price
    quotes for the order

    The JD-01 Compressor

    I will be looking forward to read from you soon because the order is an
    urgent one.

    Regards,

    MR MUBARAQ QOYUM
    MARKETING DIRECTOR
    REAL MARKETING LLC
    PLOT 12 INDUSTRIAL LAYOUT
    AL QOUZ, DUBAI
    UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

    The email address is mubaraq.realm@gmail.com one to keep a note of!!

    Hope the information helps

  8. Yup …same as the previous respondent. Cheque for £59,000 for an order worth £700.
    Bank picked it up and passed to fraud dept.

    MR MUBARAQ QOYUM
    MARKETING DIRECTOR
    REAL MARKETING LLC
    PLOT 12 INDUSTRIAL LAYOUT
    AL QOUZ, DUBAI
    UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

    mubaraq.realm@gmail.com

    Comedians. Might even be children. Feels very amateurish.

  9. Another one here a few days ago on the 23rd July 2013.

    £96,917.00 cheque for a €49,521.00 marine diesel engine… All in the form of a cheque, so picked up at that stage. In this instant the cheque presented was in the name of: Locata Housing Services

    Add this email to your junk mail file!!

    mubaraq.realm@gmail.com

    As stated, very amateurish, easy enough to second guess its a hopeless scam.

  10. Something similar is happening to us, except the are not targeting us for the fraud itself but using our company name and registered address (a genuine UK Ltd Company, marketing and advertising) as their company name and address requesting high value items of plant and machinery from UK supplier. I am getting all kinds of invoices and calls for welding equipment and generators!! I know of 5 definite instances so far, all within the last 10 days.

    Anyone receive purchase orders or requests for goods from Stephen White / Afolabi Goodluck Abiodun?

    Spoke to one of these targeted suppliers yesterday, he has already “received” nearly £100,000 more than the invoice value, immediately followed up by an email saying “oops sorry can we have the difference back urgently”.

    All i can do is warn the suppliers that contact me, but i am very worried that there is a lot more we don’t know of, and this Mr White is using our business name and address!!

    Have passed the details to the police but i don’t know what they can do.

  11. This also just happened to me. He wasted a lot of my time communicating to buy a $10,030 order and then sent a check for $100,300. Then came the email saying, ‘Oh, we made a terrible mistake.’ It has happened to me before, and my bank recognized it immediately. Though the information is usually false I am posting all his details here in case someone reads this before giving in to the temptation.

    Al Khalid Yusuf Trading LLC
    Ras Al Khor Industrial Area 3
    Near Aladin Container Terminal
    Deira Dubai
    UAE
    +971522420359

  12. Hellen Benzo, plot 10, Unit 105, Amjah Khan, Dubai.

    Beware of anything from this organisation or person. They ask if you will be able to send goods for export. Then once agreed Send USD cheques to cover payment of goods required. But beware as although the cheques clear they are later cancelled ( Even after 26 days cleared in bank ). By this time they hope that you have delivered the goods…. you will not be able to trace them.
    No Official order, no official email address, no telephone number….the alarm bells start ringing
    Also the delivery address will be some house address and not a shipping Company..
    For instance:
    MR AKINADE MICHAEL
    173C EARLHAM GROVE
    FOREST GATE
    LONDON E7 9AP.
    Beware of this address. Its all fake.

  13. I let out my 14 bedroom house at weekends for around £3K. I received a request by gmail from an Abdul Kazari from the Al Hamas Trading Company LLC, of 501, Al Mustafawi Building, Burdubai, Dubai-UAE, asking to book. He wanted full bank details (address, IBAN etc) so that he could make a payment. All a bit iffy, but who knows what Arab banking is like? However provided only the account holder’s name, sort code and account number. Time passes and I get another message ‘if the payment of AMOUNT mentioned in the last message is now received in your account? Kindly confirm the amount received and get back to us as soon as possible to enable us to settle the differences’. We check the Internet and discover the Dubai Overpayment Fraud, thankfully before any transactions took place. Sympathies to those who have been conned.

  14. Someone calling themselves Faizan Mustapha, at abdulkhalidtradinggroup@gmail.com is currently attempting this on a company account by snail mailing a $72,858.00 check to our bank for $4,000.00 worth of goods and asking for a “refund”. We know better than to participate and have the bank and the FBI working on it.

  15. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is compensating all the scam Contact me in this Email (peitrosalvii@gmail.com)

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