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NHS couple tricked out of £14,000 after falling victim to eBay motorhome scam

A Lincoln couple who both work in the NHS have had their life-long dream shattered after falling victim to a £14,000 scam.

Paul Harding-Hubbard and wife Emma longed to buy a motorhome so they could spend their rare time together as family with their three children Marley, Maxwell and Maisie, but their grand plans soon took a cruel turn just as things looked to be coming together.

The life dream appeared to be moving a step closer to reality after the couple, who live in Brant Road, remortgaged their home to release the £14,000 they needed.

After scouring online marketplace eBay, the couple fell in love with a home advertised as being for sale in Downham Market in Norfolk.

Paul, a paramedic for EMAS for 30 years, said: ‘We have both been in the services for a long time and we have always had this thing that we would like to get a motorhome and just have some quality time with the kids when we can.

Paul Harding-Hubbard and wife Emma long dreamed of buying a motorhome to travel with their young children Marley, Maxwell and Maisie

Paul Harding-Hubbard and wife Emma long dreamed of buying a motorhome to travel with their young children Marley, Maxwell and Maisie

‘I am 51 now so we wanted to spend the last 10 quality years of my life having some quality time with the kids and making memories.

‘The only way to get that kind of money was to remortgage the house. We were dead excited, we have been looking and looking and looking at motorhomes on eBay and ringing.

‘One came up last Wednesday night. It was really nice, Emma said she really liked it.’

Initially, the couple feared they had missed out after a woman, who claimed her name was Tina Corcoram, revealed she had already agreed to sell the motorhome to a dealer, who was coming to pay a deposit on the Saturday, May 16.

However, that didn’t stop Paul pitching his love for the vehicle.

He told Lincolnshire Live: ‘I told her all our circumstances. I told her that we were in the NHS and we were both working quite hard lately and this was our life-long dream that we had to go and do this, that and other things in a motorhome with the kids.

‘Quite often we are working. We work opposite shifts and the kids suffer.

Paul had asked for more pictures and video footage of the vehicle after starting to harbour doubts. The motorhome was listed at £14,000, which also started to arouse suspicion

Paul had asked for more pictures and video footage of the vehicle after starting to harbour doubts. The motorhome was listed at £14,000, which also started to arouse suspicion

‘You are looking after other people and your own family suffers, which we accept because that is the job you sign up for.’

Tina said she would speak with her husband and in the meantime, Paul spent his spare seconds away from the frontline checking the motorhome’s details on the internet.

A check on the DVLA seemed to all measure out and there was even an advert of the home being sold two years ago with a different interior.

To their astonishment, the woman called back and said she wanted to sell to them.

Paul said: ‘She said “look I have spoken to my husband and we have both agreed. He has rang this bloke and told him that we have sold it to you.”‘

‘I offered her the asking price. She said due to your circumstances and the fact you are frontline workers, we would really like you to have it.

‘I was like that is amazing, thank you so much.’

Paul was still not completely sold though and began asking more pressing questions about why the woman wanted to sell.

He was told by the person going by the name Tina that her husband had sciatica and struggled to drive so they were looking to buy a static caravan instead.

Paul even pointed out the cheap cost of the motorhome – but was told they knew they had underpriced it, but were prepared to take a hit because that is what they had listed it for.

Paul said: ‘It was all really believable. She told me the mileage on it. Then we got talking about had she been away in it. She said oh yeah you want to take your kids to Germany.

‘She said we have been to this place with the grandkids in Germany. It has got a waterpark and is so good for the kids. I said how excited they were and how excited we were.’

Paul, who says he always ‘sees the best in everybody’, then offered to pay the £14,000 in full believing his family’s dream was finally coming true.

Both Emma and Paul are long-serving NHS workers and had been planning for respite following busy careers in the health service

Both Emma and Paul are long-serving NHS workers and had been planning for respite following busy careers in the health service

Again, he pressed Tina on doubts such as the motorhome being in a different place to the address Tina had said.

But, once more she had an answer, explaining that the motorhome was at her son’s home as he had put it into storage.

She was even able to list all the stuff in the window of the house that Paul had used Google Maps to have a look at.

Emma, Paul’s wife and a cardiology nurse at Lincoln County Hospital, was still hesitant about forking out a large sum when they hadn’t seen the home in person so she even spoke to Tina.

Paul added: ‘She spoke to the wife. She said to my wife it’s all good, I promise you won’t be disappointed. She really sounded genuine.’

Tina even spoke fondly of the neighbours. Both in agreement, the pair arranged to transfer the money, and even spoke to the fraud team at their bank about it.

The money went through on Thursday afternoon, May 13, but still Paul had small doubts.

He got a friend who is a policeman to ring Tina up and enquire about the motorhome.

He said: ‘He came back and said she it has been sold.

‘I said brilliant that makes me feel loads better.

‘Surely someone who was scamming wouldn’t ring you back and say it is sold, they would carry on scamming. I felt quite at ease about it.’

After lines of contact went quiet, it so became apparent Paul and family had parted with the cash and would not be receiving anything in return. 

Read More – Original Source

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