Prosecutors say puppies and other animals were listed for sale on the internet and once someone showed an interest, the scammers sent texts and email about getting the animal to its new home via a delivery service. According to a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice, the scammers also set up a fake delivery service, often demanding more money to get the pets transported or to deal with exposure to Covid.
A woman from Fruitland, Iowa is listed as “Victim 2” in court documents. Prosecutors say she paid $1849 for a mini-dachshund a year ago, but never got a dog. A 28-year-old citizen of Cameroon was extradited from Romania to the U.S. to face wire fraud, identity theft and other charges in the case.