The story is familiar, “I was filling up at the gas station and a man approached me about needing to sell his jewelry in order to pay for gas to get back home”. As a pawn store by I35 we hear this story 4 or 5 times a week. It always ends the same – an unsuspecting victim pays for gold jewelry in order to help out another person, but the jewelry turns out to be gold plated and worth nothing.
The truth is that a certain small percentage of the population like to prey on people’s good nature by deceiving them and playing on their emotions in order to exploit them for money. An unsuspecting person will go out of their way to help out another person in distress; through no fault of their own, they will pay for the gold and the scammer has another victim. These scammers have no fear because they are hardly prosecuted and there are plenty of potential victims repeat the scam.
Do not fall victim to these people. Do not buy these sad stories. There are several pawn stores and/or gold buying stores where people can sell their legitimate gold jewelry. It would be extremely rare for a person in distress to sell their last remaining item of value for $20-$100 dollar for one tank of gas. That is why the scam works, it’s such a small sum of money for a person to pay for an expensive piece of jewelry. Greed is introduced to the equation and the victim justifies paying $20-$100 for the gold piece that could be worth hundreds. The scammer knows this and is completely ok with “selling” this valuable piece because they need the gas money to get back home.
Before you buy gold or other valuables from strangers, ask yourself “Is this too good to be true?” If it seems like a great deal, it is probably one of the worst deals you will ever make.