To all buyers of Russian Oil Products:
Do not pay any upfront Transneft fee to Russian Sellers under no circumstances.
There is a well organized Russian crime network made of many so-called Russian independent sellers or seller's mandates,all of them advertising on Alibaba.com but their leader is posing as the Presient of Transneft, the Russian State Pipeline monopoly, issuing fake Transneft documents including Invoice with Transneft bank accounts (which really belong to the scammers), Affidavit and contracts. He uses the following email addresses: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. All deceptive email addresses from a Russian free mail server using the name of a legitimate Russian official to fool foreigners who think that they are dealing with the head of Transneft. We learned that he also uses the alias: Sergey Dmitriev.
Buyers from many countries have been victimized by these scammers and they are still in business.
These people are not selling oil. Their business is to scam foreign oil buyers for upfront Transneft fees.
DO NOT SEND THEM MONEY, YOU WILL NEVER SEE THE OIL AND WILL LOSE ANY MONEY THAT YOU SEND THEM.
We have paid Transneft fees for over 8 contracts and have lost all that money
Their contracts usually include Cell phone as seller's phone, fake ****, fake SWIFT code, fake email addresses, fake bank officer who is usually an individual who is part of a scam.
All phone and email messages that the buyer sends to the seller's bank go to people working for the scam not to the bank.
Some of these companies are fictitious and do not even legally exist.
When they provide Transneft invoice and other documents, if you ask for verification, they will put you in contact with fake Transneft officials including someone who claimed that he is the President of Transneft and a close friend of President Putin. All of These people are also part of the scam and no really who they claim to be.
They used to provide an invoice for payment to be wired to Alfa Bank or Russian Standard Bank in behalf of Transneft pipeline or Transneft Trustees; Not True. They have people inside Alfa Bank, Russian Standard bank and other Russian banks to divert the money to them.
Nowadays, they use Russian Standard Bank and other banks with the money going to an individual who supposes to be a Transneft Trustee but is part of the gang. Their fee went from $28,000.00 last year to $30,000.00 now per 500k contract.
They will make you believe that you are getting a god deal because you suppose to pay both the internal and external fees upfront but because of their special relationship with the President of Transneft, they will arrrange an exemption for you to only pay the Internal fee. All scam talk. The following companies are part of the scam: Alduke Holdings-Sibneftprom, Soyuz Corporation, Igion Oil, Icon oil & Gas, Rusneftprom, Golden Oil, Zorin Energy Resources.
If you pay them once, they will ask you to submit more contract before they can perform on your first contract because they must meet internal Transneft quota before they can deliver any PB or POP to you. If you insist, they will put you in touch with the fake President of Transneft who claims to be Mr. Boishtoc himself, to tell you that the Russian seller is in good standing with Transneft but you must deliver more contract to them so that they can meet their Transneft quota.
Avoid individuals like Nikolai Gubin from Alduke Holdings, Andrei Shaika from Soyuz Corp and Rusneftprom. In the case of Alduke, after you pay, they will then tell you that they have back tax problems with the government and cannot perform until this problem is resolved and will try to have the tax problem confirmed by the fake Transneft President who is really the ring master. This Master Scammer will not only confirm that Alduke or any of scammers is a good seller but will ask you to advance Million dollars in cash (to be wired to a bank that they will provide) to him so that he can get Russian officials to help Alduke so that you can get your oil. Right but not in this lifetime !!!! Just tell this guy to send you a certified copy of his passport as Mr. Boishtoc, the head of Transneft, so that you can verify it with the Russian Embassy before you send him the Million in cash that he is asking for. He will tell you that he is very offended by that request and will hang up the phone quickly.
These scammers will object to you visiting Moscow to personally make payment to Transneft Bank then move to LC in exchange for PB/POP documents there.
No matter what you do, do not pay them upfront fees and do not accept any procedure where you have to pay large upfront sum to get the deal started. Once you pay and pay, there is no way to get your money back and recover the lost time. The fake Mr. Boishtoc from Transneft will tell you that Transneft has met their obligations and that you are now liable for the additional external fee of $150,000.00 per contract and that you should address your concerns with the Russian seller.
Things to do to avoid these scams:
1.- Always contact your country's embassy in Moscow for help on screening Russian sellers.
2.- Ask your embassy to recommend a local lawyer to screen and verify any document that you receive from Moscow.
3.- Get your lawyer to invite you to Moscow to verify all documents issued by your seller and to visit your seller.
4.- Get the seller to move first by issuing PB from reputable Russian Bank with a major Foreign corresponding bank and Vessel Charter Party Agreement verifiable through your lawyer in Moscow.
There is no scam without a Bank. Check the seller's bank listed on the contract. Bank uses their own mail server so if given bank email address shows a different mail server then be concerned. Call the bank. Bank officer should use a land line for their phone number not cell phone
Serious and sucessful sellers should not have any need to collect Transneft fees upfront from you once you show then preliminary proof of fund via BCL or soft probe. Only scammers want to see your money first, because their business is to collect these fees,not to sell oil. Furthermore, once you send them one payment, they tell you that they have a quota and that you need to send them more deals before they can accept your Pre-advice LC or issue PB.
Even if you ask them to sign a promisory note to return the money in case of non-performance, they will do it because you have no way of collecting that money back from them.
Do not accept any document from these people unless you have a way of verifying it independently. They are master forgeurs for all sort of refinery and government documents.
They use a lot of Seller's mandate all of over the world to bring them business. The Russian mandates are part of the scam but foreign mandates are usually innocent victims who think that they are representing a legitimate Russian seller.
Happy Trading !!!br/>
Please don't be afraid to share your scam stories !!! Scammers use the same scheme over and over because their victims do not speak out
Your story will help weeding out scammers from the business. It is not just about the money, it is about detecting these scams soon enough to avoid wasting time.
NOTE: Since this article was initially posted here, there have been some new company listings on Alibaba.com (Lukhoilsandgas, Golden Oil,....)presenting themselves as mandates for Russian companies like RUSNEFTPROM.
My personal recommendation is not to do business with any mandate or company that lists relationship with Alduke Holdings-Sibneftprom, RUSNEFPROM or any of the companies listed above in this article.
The real test is for you to get a copy of their procedure, they all require upfront fee from the buyer for Transneft fee before they issue PB, POP, or show any oil or SGS report or proof of previous deals where that have actually ship any oil to anybody.
Dear Mr. TITO werwer,
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