Bulloch Co. Sheriff’s Office urges caution over trailer sale scam, five suspects arrested

Published: May. 23, 2023 at 9:45 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

BULLOCH COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - If you’re in retail, you can be eager to clinch a sale and see that commission.

But a scam that stretches from Coffee County to Bulloch County can cost plenty of people lots of money.

Sheriff’s investigators said this started in another part of the state where several companies make construction trailers. It targets not only the retailers and manufacturers, but also the next buyers who innocently buy something that was taken by fraud.

They say crooks bought trailers in Coffee County, but used stolen credit cards and rolled them off the lot immediately.

“So they have a window to get rid of this trailer. And when they do, the next person in line to buy it...they’re a victim too,” said Inv. William Sims with the Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office.

The retailers find out the card was stolen, and the second buyers find out the trailer was stolen when they try to buy a tag. The thefts add up quickly.

“We’re talking about almost $10,000 apiece trailers. We’ve got some 8 1/2 x 24 foot trailers that run about $9,000 apiece. You’ve got dump trailers that construction companies use and they run $12-14,000 apiece.”

Bulloch County deputies worked with Coffee County to arrest five suspects. Authorities say they brought trailers here before they took them elsewhere to sell.

Investigators urge trailer and equipment dealers to double check credit card info before letting someone take off with such a large purchase.

“Only accept partial payment over the phone. Make them wait to pay the rest when they get there. There are some things the businesses can do to police themselves,” said Lt. Walter Deal with the Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office.

The third victim in all this is the person whose credit card was fraudulently used.

Investigators say make sure your bank or credit card company has measures in place to watch for potential fraud and alert you right away so you won’t be a victim.