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What to do LEGALLY If you been the victim of a Scam. 6 replies,13972 views


Most people who have been victimized by a Scammer feels helpless, hopeless, and useless to do anything about it. That's just not correct. Doing nothing allows these scammers to flourish and keep thinking they can get away with it over and over again.

Here are the steps you can take legally to fight back. I'm putting my Intl Law training to good use and giving free advice. Please remember these are broad steps as legalities will differ from country to country. I'm going to highlight the bigger countries that are in the WTO and that are a party to the GATT and hope others will contribute.

If you've been victimized by a China based company:

The Chinese government has been very diligent over the last few years to go after, prosecute, and incarcerate people that defraud and traffic in **** goods. You most likely will not make a financial recovery, but you can take satisfaction in knowing you put them in a China prison.

If you're a US Citizen, you can file a civil suit in most US courts as long as you have the full contact information of the company or person (name, address, city, province, zip). Once served, and a court date set, the court will issue a vedict in your favor if they don't reply. If they do, all the better for you for presenting your case. With that verdict, you can take it to the local provincial government of China (you'll need a Chinese lawyer) to begin the process there.

*caveat - this process is tedious to say the least and can be expensive. If you've been taken for under $5000usd, it would not be worth your effort to go to this length. Stick with the criminal side and settle for the prison life for the scammer.

If however, you're dealing in large amounts ($30,000+usd), you can also take your claim to the world court, for which Chinese companies (under WTO acceptance) are liable to. For this you will need an Intl Attorney.

If you've been victimized by a USA based company:

The USA, in my opinion, has the greatest legal system in the world for getting scammers. In US law, not only can their be civil penalties (tremble damages, fines, forfeitures, and seizures), but there is also criminal liabilities as well.

This is what you do. Notify(call) the court of the city and/or county of the address where the company and/or person lives. You can google this information. eg. If the scammer lives in Smyrna,GA you can google (Smyrna,GA+ civil courts). Most courts have a general inquiry line where the person job is to render 'non-legal' but helpful advice on how to file, where to file, and to what specific court to file for your given situation. If you're dealing with a large amount of money, it is always best to get a lawyer and let them do all the leg work for you. You can google the ABA (American Bar Association) and call their hotline. You can explain your situation to them and they will refer you to at least 2 lawyers who can assist you.

If you've been scammed by a EU member country:

My legal experience with EU coutries has been limited to the UK, Britain specifically. The UK and EU has similar procedures like in the USA. However, because the EU is so expanisve, and can be country specific, it's best to get a lawyer for the specific country, as the amount of money that is being litigated will decide what court will here it. If you've been scammed out of a lot of money, the gerneral assembly EU Council can hear the case against any of their members. This is usally reserved when you're doing volume Intl Trade.

Who and Whom can be sued?:

I'm going to give a general answer, but you should always check with each individual country for the specifics.

Generally you can sue : 1. The Individual 2. The Company 3. The Officers of the Corporation. 4. and Occasionally any company or organization that was a facilitator of the fraud. You can sue any or all, jointly or severably in your lawsuit.

On TM someone was telling me about how they got scammed by a Gold member of Alibaba and asked me if they could sue Alibaba. That's a tricky question. I don't want to answer that question in it's entirety for fear of reprisal. I will say this. In USA there is a legal doctrine called: 'willful blindness.' Under that doctrine you can be held responsible if you have a conscious purpose of avoiding learning the truth. In layman terms it's defined like this: 'Any company/individual who seeks to avoid civil or criminal liability for a wrongful act by intentionally putting himself in a position where he will be unaware of facts which would render him liable.' After that statement, I'll let you be the judge on liabilty.

Paperwork you'll need to file a complaint and/or a case

Sometimes there are legitimate misunderstandings that happen in Intl Trade. Misunderstanding aren't scams. If you're prepared to say you've been scammed, you will have to provide documention of the scam in court. This will include:
1. Full contact details of the company
2. Company registration information
3. Contracts in the language of all countries involved
4. Proforma Invoice in the language of all parties involved
5. Written coorespondence and request (snail mail, e-mail, IM logs)
6. Your full contact details
7. Your companies registration information
8. Names of all people whom you've cooresponded with
9. Proof of sending financial payment (TT. Wire, L/C, etc)

These are the basic documents you will need to begin. Depending on the amount involved, and the size of the company, this could take months or years to resolve.

Simple steps to take to avoid being scammed:

1. Perform Due Diligence
2. Always ask for and require Full contact details that can be VERIFIED.
3. Never send money through non-traceable instruments (eg WU, Money Gram, etc)
4. If sending by TT, contact the bank FIRST to verify the name, address, company name, and phone number. You can't open a **** in China or any country I know of, without providing identification and proof of residency. Have your bank contact the receiving bank, and ask the bank to fax you their information they used for opening the account. Match this information with the information you should already have. If information doesn't match, there's a reason.
5. If something sounds too good to be true, it's because it is. Think rationally at all times and you'll make wiser choices.

One more very important caveat:

No court in any jurisdiction or country will allow someone to file a civil claim if they've been scammed by someone selling **** goods. This is called the 'clean hands' doctrine. In order to seek relief from the court, you must first represent that you were acting 'cleanly.' In other words, anyone buying **** goods, knowingly or unknowingly on Alibaba or any other site, will be denied civil relief. If this is you, and you've been scammed. Your loss.

I hope others from other countries will post the legal steps for pursuing scammers in their country.

WDC Intl Inc

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Re: What to do LEGALLY If you been the victim of a Scam.
Replying to [Obiwill]:Hi my name is jessica and i read your article on being scammed. I was scammed by a company in china. I lost about 1800 dollars. I have all the information. And have got in contact with them. Once they knew it was me they cut contact. I would like to know if u could help me on this. I would like information on how to get in contact with the Chinese government. If you could help me I would appreciate it. Thankyou so much for your time. Jessica
Re: What to do LEGALLY If you been the victim of a Scam.
What to do LEGALLY If you been the victim of a Scam.
Could i ckeck the company named Super-Elec Distributor LTD located at
No.256,2/F.,Saibo Building, HuaQiang North Rd, FuTian District Shenzhen
Guangdong 518001 China.
I bought 10 Sony PSP worth 650USD via western union and the supplier
(ZENG XIANGYING) told me that it was shipped through a shipping agent Sinotech International Ltd with EMS tracking number
# EB100186308CN through a certain Mr Jack and after a few days he mailed me stating:

Hello Sir,
It is 16:47pm on Monday afternoon here. I just got a urgent call from
my forwarder and they told me that the shipment was stuck at the custom
while tried to declare from Chinese Export Custom on Yesterday.

The custom officials were holding the shipment, it was because they
found following reasons about our shipment:
1. Brand Sony-without Sony original permit certificate, they do not
allow to ship any brand products. Or, they will catch the shipment.
2. Since 2009 in Shenzhen city, do not allow to ship out any brand
products like Sony, Apple etc, only the original manufacturer that can
show the permit certificate can ship.

Except above, my personal opinion is, the custom officials are just
greedy and making a way to earn our money. They are the God and they
can tell which we can go. Now we are just unluck and being hold and
they have asked us to pay penalty so they will just release our

My forwarder advised that the penalty amount will be same as actual
product amount. So, the custom requested us to pay US$600 for the
penalty. After we paid, they will sign their name and release our
shipment. If we did not pay, they will treat that we are running
illegal business and will keep our shipment.

I am sorry, but i did not know this change this year. I have shipped so
many brand items this year and no problem. I think it is very simple to
understand that the custom people are just greedy, they are just making
an excuse to need our pay. This is also not anyone's mistake, because
once the custom make a policy then nobody can against it.

As a responsilbe seller, i would love to pay full penalty myself, only
in case of my mistake or fault. But, if i paid the full penalty this
time, which means will bring me no margin at all. So, i wish we can
help each other and see what is your good idea by return.

I won't go away, and i just hope i can resolve this issue as soon as
possible, the best way i can do is i can pay 300USD myself so to help
you, this can make up my loss and also yours. So, can you also pay
300USD yourself then we help each other to take back the shipment
first? I think this way looks fair and next deal we can find a way to
earn back our loss.

The custom give deadline only until tomorrow on Tuesday. So, please
make a decision fast. By now i can only give 300USD, if you agree,
please send half penalty 300USD before tomorrow, so i can pay full
penalty to the custom and then get back the shipment. And, at the same
day, it will be going on plane and you can check it online.

I am sorry about this matter, but i also just get this information not
a long time ago. I will be waiting on MSN if you still need to talk to

Kind Regards

I would also like to know if there is really such rule regarding the
Im really worried that i have been scammed by this supplier.
Any assistance would greatly be appreciated.
Thank you very much,

I would really appreciate it if someone from China place could try ckecking the company named Super-Elec Distributor LTD if it really exist.
Anyways, i made the order from .
Thanks again for your assistance...
Re: What to do LEGALLY If you been the victim of a Scam.

My name is Ernesto, I'm form El Salvador Central America,I bought 150 pieces of FM transmitters on for Vstar communication LTD, they dont work, I talked to Fai from alibaba via email, she just said that I have to fix the things with Vstar communitions, today I was checking the information on the web page, after being a ''gold supplier'' they left, they are not anymore on

When I talk to Daisy wang from Vstar communication she was really direct to say ''I wont send you the money, if they dont work is not my problem''

I made a formal sue on El Salvador but the things here are so slow, can someone tell me how to do to get my money back? I will really apriciate it.

Re: Re: What to do LEGALLY If you been the victim of a Scam.
Yes I really need help I've been scammed for 1900 usd is there anyway you could help me figure out what to do or represent me to them? my email is I am willing to pay!
why can your company not help
I really do not understand why alibaba or aliexpress can not help me.  I was contacted by Ewonderful after a post on alibaba.  I done something really stupid by send the money wu, I know that but I ordered first order and it came ok, but second order I can not get in to;uch with anyone at the company.  They are not answering emails or anything.  Can you tell me if Ewonderful is still doing business in China and is Amanda Jiang tm number 220239667 still doing business.  I can not afford to spend any money because I sent the company all that I had to spend on that.  Can we not get in touch with the Shenzhen police if they are still at their location and file charges thru the police.  If that is possible can I get the address of the police and I will give the information about the fraud to them.  Thanks for you time and effort.  Jerry Reed

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