ED Magedson – Founder
Premier Financial, Inc. International Claim Department200 King Street W Toronto, Ontario United States of America
My husband received a letter in a plain white envelope with no return address. The letterhead said GFA Resources Inc. and is dated 10/7/2009. The letter stated "We are pleased to inform you that you are one of the declared winners of the INTERNATIONAL SHOPPING SWEEPSTAKES LOTTERY promotions held on MAY 22ND, 2009 int he 2nd Category" and goes on to say that we were one of 20 people that are splitting $4,300,000.00 (of which $215,000.00 was ours).
Along with the letter (signed by Mikail Swaltz, Promotion Manager), was a check for $4,850.00 and instructions to call Ken Hanson at 1-866-305-1428 ext. 2. I assumed right away that it was some sort of scam, but the check did not have any notes on it (about how cashing it would enroll me in... etc.) It was a check from Tectran Manufacturing, Inc in Buffaly, NY, which is an international company--I looked them up. The instructions were to send $2850 via Western Union to "Paula Robinson, New York, NY" (which was our "tax agent") to cover the taxes after cashing the $4850 check.
The more we got involved in this, the more legitimate it appeared be (trust me, I am VERY skeptical about this stuff). The bank cashed the check and within 24 hours it had cleared in our account (which led me to believe it was more legit--the bank wouldn't cash a fake check, right?) The check even had a watermark to prevent fraud...
We were told by Ken Hanson that we were entered into this sweepstakes by shopping at Walmart or Kmart--it was a "promotional" thing.
It was not until tonight that I thought of entering "International Shopping Sweepstakes Lottory" into a google search. What I found was this "Ripoff Report" website and my blood turned cold. We were out over $3000 dollars (it costs $190 to send the $2850 via Western Union). The people that posted their reports were EXACTLY the same as mine, only the company was not GFA REsources, it was Premier Financial. The content of the letter and money amount was almost identical.
I am writing this so anyone who is smart enough to do a search FIRST will see it and NOT fall for the scam. I am not sure what to do at this point because I am sure my bank will come after me if that check was fake. We are struggling financially, like many others and the thought of some good luck coming our way was so exciting. I am sickened that people are so mean and wonder how they sleep at night taking food out of my kids' mouths.
This scam has been going on since at least March (from what I read from other reports) and I'm sure they have screwed many good people out of their money. Please spread the word about this scam. I hope we can catch these scumbags and make them pay for what they have done!
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/16/2009 06:54 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/premier-financial-inc-international-claim-department/toronto-ontario-m5h-1a1/premier-financial-inc-international-claim-department-premier-financial-inc-internati-510500. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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