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I WAS SCAMMED - Warning to Small Business Owners

Posted by Penny on February 13, 2014 at 5:10 AM

I was scammed by a Mike Sharples of Manila SHARPLES GROUP LTD, who wanted to buy my natural skin care products for a shop in Philippines.

He purchased $2110.50 au worth of goods which I spent the next few weeks making day and night for my first intl customer.

He included the freight amount from AIR BUSINESS LOGISTICS.

So I was to pay $1875 to the fraudulent freight company and Mike Sharples paid up front by credit card.

Once I had transferred the $1875 to a ROSARIO B ALVIRDE air business logistics, Wells Fargo Bank Texas, 

Mike sharples did a credit card charge back and won. I have heard that the bank almost always does back their own customer regardless of the situation! Obviously justice and honesty is not their highest priority.

I'm required to pay the credit card charge back fees for all the 4 transactions ($180) and a total of $3,902.04 AUD to Paypal. The NERVE!

My bank said they would do an International Trace and Recovery which cost $45, and yesterday a reply email said, they can only recover the funds if authorised by the scammer, yeah right! also they did not tell me this at the onset, they implied it was a sure thing. So I am feeling today that themoney is gone. I believed I had thought all the scenarios through, and the outcomes. I guess they are professionals and I didnt have a chance in hell. I must be completely honest though, I was afraid of this happening, and this is a very valuable lesson to trust my intuition more!

So I have been scammed $1875 and am in debt with paypal and the collection agency has already been in contact with me.

surely I am not the first to be scammed by this ass!

As Mike Sharples continued to order more products in large quantities I spent most of the money available on new supplies and essential oils.

I'm on a disability pension, and this is my new small business/Hobby registered last year after a nervous breakdown and recovery. I am feeling quite depressed after this incident. I detest injustice!

I can not believe, after I told the scammer of my situation and that I was a sole owner with very little capitol, he responded by saying "He knows what it's like to be hurt and would not do that to another person, and that he was enthusiastic to promote my natural goods in the Philippines".

Damn these fraudulent criminals. They need to be STOPPED!

Please share this where you can, to warn others!

If you have been approached by Mike sharples please report it to

Scam watch

Public Information Officer | ACCC Infocentre

Australian Competition & Consumer Commission

23 Marcus Clarke Street Canberra 2601 | http://www.accc.gov.au

T: 1300 302 502

 and

ScamNet 

Consumer Protection – Department of Commerce

A: 219 St Georges Tce, PERTH WA 6000

P: 1300 30 40 54

M: Locked Bag 14, CLOISTERS SQUARE, Perth WA 6850

W: www.commerce.wa.gov.au

 


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13 Comments

Reply Timmypsype
5:57 PM on September 26, 2017 
Hi HI
Reply Steph
1:47 AM on September 13, 2014 
Hi Penny!
Oh that's good, just so you all know he is now running as 'Norman Dash' from Dash General Trading.... dont fall for the scam!
Reply Penny
3:04 AM on September 12, 2014 
Hi Steph,
Dont worry they dont work that way. I thought it couldn't go wrong because he was paying me up front. Credit card chargebacks. there is no justice. what is getting to me is that they SHOULD not still be able to send emails. No-one wanted to know! Seems like thats still the case. Hes a criminal and should be jailed.
SO GLAD you are safe! :)
Reply Steph
2:50 AM on September 12, 2014 
SO glad I looked into the email I received from the same people?. they nearly got me! Am a little worried they can access my computer/information now. Do you know if they can or is it only if we gave them information? Such terrible people in this world?.
Reply Penny
4:15 AM on June 17, 2014 
Richard I am so sorry I did not see this post. It was a few weeks ago, where are you at now?
what they do is once you have paid the freight into the bogus freight companies account. they then tell their bank that unauthorised purchases have been made on their account. then the bank or pay pal, initiates a dispute, then they give the money back to the scammer, and you owe $180 for each charge back- it was 4 payments for me of $1000 each. I then have to pay back paypal they ampount they paid me, doesnt matter where the money went you must pay it back. You have LOST the money you paid into the scammers account.
Reply Penny
4:10 AM on June 17, 2014 
Hi Melissa. I'm so sorry this happened to you. It was sickening to see they are still committing this crime and targeting sole owner hobby businesses who can barely afford paying postage. I contacted so many departments who had no way of helping me or even helping me get my money back. Australia really needed to support the victims of crime better. I am still paying back this debt and it really hurts. Yes trusubg our intuition can be quite difficult when there is a whole pile of good reasoning going on ;)
All the best to you and than you so much for your reply. xxx

Melissa says...
Hi Penny
Sorry to hear you got caught by this lowlife. The same thing happened to me a few years ago, but it was by someone from Nigeria. It was a similar deal where they asked me to pay for freight & insurance. I felt like such a fool afterwards and I wished I had followed my intuition. As a stay-at-home mum I could hardly afford to lose thousands of dollars. I was so depressed about it that I stopped my business. I just want you to know you're not the only one. These scammers are clever and they don't care what they do to people but they'll get their karma coming back to them eventually. All the best.
Reply Melissa
11:53 AM on May 10, 2014 
Hi Penny
Sorry to hear you got caught by this lowlife. The same thing happened to me a few years ago, but it was by someone from Nigeria. It was a similar deal where they asked me to pay for freight & insurance. I felt like such a fool afterwards and I wished I had followed my intuition. As a stay-at-home mum I could hardly afford to lose thousands of dollars. I was so depressed about it that I stopped my business. I just want you to know you're not the only one. These scammers are clever and they don't care what they do to people but they'll get their karma coming back to them eventually. All the best.
Reply Richard Meyers
7:04 PM on May 8, 2014 
Hello, I am in New Zealand and have been contacted by Victor Gaisano with exactly the same scam using the same freight company. AIR BUSINESS LOGISTICS. He has ordered art works from me and paid for the art and freight in full. I have the funds in my bank account and so far have not paid the freight company. I was interested to read about your experience and I am not familiar with how a credit card charge back works. I would really appreciate it if you could explain it to me. I have had three conversations with my bank and they tell me the scammer cannot take any funds from my accounts unless the deal is in dispute which would mean goods not arriving or lost in transit. This problem would be covered by insurance which is included in the freight costs. I have asked Victor for the export documents to be sent to me before I will pay the freight account, so far they have not arrived and I don't expect them to arrive. I would like to scam the scammer and I have stalled Victor for 7 days now while I am investigating what can be done. If you could explain to me about the charge back it give me more information on how to scam the scammer.
Regards,
Richard Meyers
New Zealand
Reply Penny
8:35 AM on March 4, 2014 
Thank you very much for sending me an email 'anonymous' saying she was also contacted by Mike Sharples and was doing her Google search on him, and saw my report. So happy to have helped :) Lets try and get this scammer stopped, as clearly he is just roaming free and getting more victims, alot more by the sounds of it. Mike Sharples international scammer and at least 4 govt departments are now notified of him, and are doing what about it?
Reply Penny
10:36 PM on February 26, 2014 
Thank you so much Sarah for leaving a comment. I am so happy you found this info on him and were saved the same fate! :)
Reply sarah
4:02 AM on February 25, 2014 
Thankyou so much!!! I have also received an email from him today asking for product catalogues to purchase from. Being wary anyway your feedback came up on the search I did on him. Thank god!! I will also be sharing this on facebook for others. So sorry you have been through what you have but thanks for saving the others of us from the same outcome.
Reply Penny
1:18 PM on February 19, 2014 
Thank you so much Justine. I am so glad you posted to let me know this has helped you. It was difficult to do research on him when I was screening as nothing much could be found. So glad you found this!!! Thank you for my well wishes, and I really hope you do contact the police and perhaps you may find out some information that could also help me, as I dont know where to turn to, Why are us Australians not protected more? Mike Sharples should be in jail, not in the business of getting away with more fraud and theft and hurting others. Justine Thank God! Please share where you can, I;m sure he has sent out hundreds of emails in the hope to catch more kind hearted, hard working small business owners.
Reply Justine
2:26 AM on February 19, 2014 
Thanks for posting this Penny, you have just saved me from being scammed.

I have been contacted by Mike at Sharples Group Ltd wanting to purchase a whole heap of my products and he is wanting me to contact ASF Logistics and get a quote and organise the freight for him.

I doubt the police can do anything about this guy, but I will be contacting them tomorrow anyway.

So sorry to hear about this and I sincerely hope you can recover from your significant loss.

Justine.