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By Hilde Kate Lysiak
January 10, 2018
A New York women was charged with theft after allegedly using a Craigslist scam to trick a Selinsgrove women into paying more than $3,000 for an apartment that was never available, according to police.
The Selinsgrove victim fell for the scam while searching on Craig’s List for an apartment in Florida.
Flora R. Soto, allegedly put up an advertisement on Craigslist offering to rent an apartment in Miami. The victim allegedly was told to pay Soto money in advance.
“She (victim) was looking for an apartment for an upcoming job in Florida. She searched the Miami area Craiglist for an apartment for rent. she located an apartment and sent an email to the link on the posting. A “Douglas” who listed their title as Property Manager told the victim that she could have the apartment, but she had to put down a $1,000.00 security deposit to reserve the apartment. The victim was pressured into putting down her money to reserve the apartment. She was told that other people were interested in the same apartment,” read the criminal complaint.
The victim was told to wire $1,000 to a Citibank account, but when the victim tried to have a friend who lived in Miami come to look at the apartment, no one was ever available, according to police.
“Douglas made up several reasons why he could not meet with the friend,” read the complaint.
After the victim sent another $2,400 she tried to receive the keys for the apartment, but Soto allegedly wouldn’t give her the keys, according to police.
“The victim promised a discount in the price of rent if she sent a payment for two months rent. The victim sent $2,400.00 to the same city bank account as the defendant. The victim attempted to receive the keys for the apartment but was denied. She asked for her money back, but it was never returned,” read the criminal complaint.
The victim sent a total of $3,400, according to police.
Soto was charged with Theft by Deception and Receiving Stolen Property.