Scam Alert: Be Careful buying a Goat

Denver Police Department: Facebook


On June 1, 2022, victims walked into the District 4 Station to file a fraud report. They victims explained that a week earlier, they responded to an ad online for a pygmy goat. Through some email exchanges with the suspect, the victims agreed to buy a goat for $300 and pay for the shipping of the goat, which was an additional $190. Using a digital payment network, the victims sent the suspects $490. The suspect then requested an additional $950 for a special box to ship the goat in. Using the same digital payment network, the victims sent the suspect the $950. After this, the suspect asked for an additional $850 to have the goat examined by a vet and $1500 for life insurance for the goat, which the victims paid for by providing the suspect with gift card redemption codes. On the date that the goat was to be delivered, the suspect requested $5000 for a permit to transport the animal to Colorado. The victims had already purchased a permit and refused to pay the $5000. When the victims arrived at the airport to pick up the goat, it had not been delivered. The victims contacted the suspect, who said they would not send the goat until all the fees were paid. It was at this point that the victims realized they had been scammed.

Similar to the puppy scam, scammers will often spoof websites of actual dog breeders, using their content to lure in victims. One of the most common themes of these scams is the unforeseen requirement of a special crate to ship the animal or added costs for vaccines, paperwork after already agreeing to purchase it or additional shipping charges. This is the scammer's attempt to swindle even more money from their victims. The most sure-fire way to prevent falling victim to a similar scam is to meet the breeder and the animal in person prior to exchanging any funds or placing a deposit. Additionally, if they accept gift card redemption codes as a form of payment, its definitely a scam.

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