Bonita Springs couple falls victim to dog fraud scam


BONITA SPRINGS, Fla. – A Bonita Springs couple is heartbroken after they found out the puppy they were trying to buy turned out to be a scam.

Ray and Leslie Youmans are trying to find the perfect puppy–a teacup chihuahua. They thought they found the one on a website titled “Splendid Chihuahuas.” At first everything seemed legitimate–adorable photos of puppies, names already picked out, and even a phone number.

“We talked to the fellow, he sent us some emails with pictures of Pinky and promises that this puppy would be shipped to us,” Ray said.

After wiring more than $500 through WalMart, the couple eagerly awaited their new companion to be delivered. However, five days later, Splendid Chihuahuas started asking for more money–$860 for shipping insurance–and this time, it needed to be wired through Western Union.

“I’m thinking all the way down to Western Union that something isn’t quite right here,” Ray said.

“That’s a big red flag unfortunately if that’s the only way the caller will have a transaction,” Beth Schell, a fraud specialist with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office said.

Now the Youmans are devastated their new puppy toys will sit on a shelf until a new best friend comes along.

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