Fraudster almost makes off with £40k Porsche

Bounce Back Loan scam warning after fraudster attempts a £40k con.

The owner of a prestige car dealership in Airdrie, Scotland, has posted warning video on Facebook where he speaks about how a conman has attempted to buy a Porsche Cayman GTS using a Bounce Back Loan, which had been fraudulently applied for in the car dealer’s name.

The Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) provides financial support to businesses across the UK that are losing revenue, and seeing their cashflow disrupted, as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and that can benefit from £50,000 or less in finance.

BBLS is available through a range of British Business Bank accredited lenders and partners, listed on the British Business Bank website. A lender can provide a six-year term loan from £2,000 up to 25% of a business’ turnover. The maximum loan amount is £50,000.  The scheme gives the lender a full (100%) government-backed guarantee against the outstanding balance of the facility (both capital and interest).

The borrower always remains fully liable for the debt.

Stephen Bogan, the co-owner of James Glen Car Sales explains that the customer had used bank details from the company invoice provided for the sale of the Porsche, and then the conman had found Bogan’s personal details online (eg birth date and address) and used those to apply for a Bounce Back Loan in the company’s name, to be deposited into the company’s bank account.

The conman had said he worked for a company called ‘BB Ltd’ and that the money would be sent to James Glen Car Sales’ bank account by his secretary.  Warning bells began to ring for Bogan and his father, Jim, when the London based customer said that he didn’t want to see the car before buying it and wanted to pay for it in full.

When the cash arrived into Bogan’s account stating “BBL” as the depositor,  Bogan decided to follow his gut instinct and call The Bank of Scotland to confirm that the funds were legitimate and couldn’t be cancelled.  It turned out the BBL stood for Bounce Back Loan, which the fraudster had managed to secure in Bogan’s name by phishing for Bogan’s personal details online.  Bogan commented:

‘This rotter had asked for an invoice with bank details on it, he’s gone online and got my date of birth and address for the business and applied for a f****** Bounce Back Loan in my name to the tune of £40k pounds to make it look like he’s paid for this car and expects us to release it when we have got the money – which we have – but it’s my own bloody money!’

When the “customer” called Bogan to confirm he had received the money, Bogan explained that he knew the funds were from a Bounce Back Loan.  The “customer” asserted that Bogan was mistaken and offered to send proof of deposit.  Of course, Bogan never heard from the customer again.  He exclaimed:

‘If we’d released the car we’d have lost the money on that and had to pay the loan back so we could have potentially lost £80k!’

A Bank of Scotland spokesperson said:

Helping keep our customers’ money safe is a top priority and, as per British Business Bank scheme guidelines, all bounce back loan applications are subject to appropriate fraud checks.  We take any reports of fraud extremely seriously and are fully investigating the circumstances of this individual case.’

Posted by James Glen Car Sales on Friday, 10 July 2020

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