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Further warning to festival-goers after Perth scammer nets $10,000 from fake tickets
Police have joined those warning ticket buyers to be wary of purchasing tickets online amid rising fraudulent sales.
Hannah Valentine, aged 19, from the Perth suburb of Innaloo, recently pleaded guilty to selling fake tickets to more than 100 people and gaining about $10,000 from the sales.
Western Australian Police Senior Constable Fraser Munro said the matter was handed over by Victoria Police, who received two complaints of fraudulent ticket sales involving Valentine.
Senior Constable Fraser Munro told the ABC that since December 2017 Valentine had been selling counterfeit tickets for concerts and music festivals on Facebook and Gumtree by creating accounts under different names.
Fake names used in the transactions included Natalia Sparrow, Daniella Walsh, Hannah Jane Mathews, HannahVal, Sophie-Marie Lewis and Jessica Lewis.
Senior Constable Munro advised “she received money via direct transfer into her bank accounts … but the tickets were either altered, or they're just fake tickets in general, and other times she didn't send the victims anything in return.”
Apart from the two complaints in Victoria, no-one else made official police reports about the scam.
Senior Constable Munro said most victims had either written it off due to the relatively small amount of money they lost, or had reported it to their bank and were told nothing could be done as they had transferred the money themselves.
He said ticket scams had started to become a real issue and warned people to take precautions when buying tickets online or in person, adding “we are seeing a lot more of people either purchasing online being scammed and not receiving the goods, or themselves trying to sell things online and have incidents where people are turning up and stealing items they're trying to sell.”
The events targeted by Valentine included a concert by US rapper Post Malone, Seasons events, and the Listen Out music festival.
Listen Out organisers said they saw many people ripped off by ticket scammers each year.
Listen Out spokeswoman told the ABC, “we created an official resale site to help facilitate the safe sale and purchase of tickets.
"All our messaging implores customers not to buy tickets from third party retailers or people they do not know."
Consumer Protection WA supported the use of reselling tickets from the official website.
The consumer watchdog received complaints about 16 scam-related ticket sales in 2018, one in January 2019 and one in February 2019.
Valentine pleaded guilty to 28 charges of gaining benefit by fraud and is due to appear in Perth Magistrates Court on 18th March.
Police urged anyone who suspected they had been sold a counterfeit ticket to report the matter immediately.
Main image: Hannah Valentine pleaded guilty to scamming more than 100 people. (Facebook)
11th February 2019 - Concert promoter Michael Chugg says Viagogo is ‘out of control ... f***ing thieves’
11th January 2019 - ACCC warns against social media ticket scams for sold-out concert tickets
13th December 2018 - Western Australian Government introduces legislation to combat ticket scalping
11th December 2018 - Japan bans ticket scalping at major sporting events
1st December 2018 - UK court ruling set to see Viagogo having to reimburse fans
16th November 2018 - Ticketek Marketplace offers ethical ticket exchange for Australian consumers
6th November 2018 - Hong Kong Consumer Council calls for overhaul of ticket resale laws
26th October 2018 - South Australian Government introduces new ticket scalping legislation
18th October 2018 - Cricket fans warned against buying Big Bash tickets from resellers
16th March 2018 - Man arrested over sales of fake tickets for Ed Sheeran Brisbane concerts
1st September 2017 - Google urged to block online resellers who dupe ticket buyers
25th September 2013 - 500,000 Australians a year caught out by online ticket scams
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