Help Me Hank! Speaker Scam
Help Me Hank: Help Me Hank! Speaker Scam
They're tall, they’re sleek, and they look cool. How much would you pay for a pair of speakers?
The box they came in says $2249 each.Now how much would you pay?
Keep that in mind as you hear what happened here at the Hyde Park T station. Two guys pulled up in a white van and offered the speakers to George McSheffrey.
"He said they just finished a job and there was excess equipment and he was trying to get rid of them," McSheffrey said.
And the price? Not thousands.
"$300 cash," McSheffrey said.
Buying speakers out of a van for cash at a train station?
"It seemed a little shady to me, but I didn’t think I was doing anything illegal," McSheffrey said.
But when George opened the speakers and listened to them, he knew they weren't even worth what he paid.
"I felt like a big dummy," McSheffrey said.
George decided not to get mad, he’d get even.
"I can't believe I’d fall for a scam like that," McSheffrey said. "I felt they were one and I was zero."
Now here’s what’s so interesting: these very impolite young men, also in a white van, are "talking" to a reporter in Oklahoma City.
He’s asking what’s up with the speakers they're selling from their back seat.
And it turns out the "leftover speakers in the white van" routine is a nationwide ploy. A consumer group called "Scam Shield" warns it's essentially a scripted sales pitch, legally questionable, offering speakers of questionable quality.
So back to George's dilemma. Wisely, he'd demanded a receipt, so we told him to call the company and request a refund. It was not easy.
"Got a run around for over two weeks," McSheffrey said.
But George kept dialing...
"I think they finally gave up, knowing I wasn’t going to stop," McSheffrey said.
Finally, we came with George to the West Bridgewater address on the receipt. He lugged the boxes in and came out with a refund check. Which, by the way, did not bounce.
"I feel like its even," McSheffrey said.
But we saw the white van parked behind the building and that means it may be coming to a parking lot or train station near you.
And like these guys in Oklahoma, they'll be after your money, right George?
"It’s a widespread scam," McSheffrey said.
We just called the company again, now their number is not in service, but this scheme has not been stamped out. Still, this ones not a toughie, you're not going to get a bargain from the back of a van.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)