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-   -   SOKY Equine Development Center - Scam? (http://www.horseforum.com/horse-protection/soky-equine-development-center-scam-223490/)

SweetBriarVixen 06-30-2013 11:35 PM

SOKY Equine Development Center - Scam?
 
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Hi everyone,


Can anyone provide any assistance with the legitimacy of a horse rescue located in Kentucky? The name of the business is SOKY Equine Development Center, and it's run by Jeffrey *****.

They are running a Facebook group, posting rescued Arabian horses available for adoption, and then having adopters PayPal the money over. They charged me a $400 adoption fee, and a transportation fee of $475 to bring the horse to Virginia.


I was SO SO excited to help rescue a horse... but then things got a little bizarre.

Jeff had no problem emailing me the adoption paperwork, but when it was time for him to send me the transport paperwork (1.5 weeks ago at this point) he suddenly ran into supposed technical problems with his email server and has been unable to send it to me, despite promising to do it probably 10 times!!

Within the last two days, Jeff has stopped answering my phone calls, and has STILL not sent me the transportation paperwork for the horse I supposedly adopted, who was supposed to arrive in Virginia in THREE DAYS. The horse (along with many others) was also listed by the SOKY Equine Development Center on EquineNow.com. (I attached a screenshot of the ad.)

As much as I don't want to think this... I am starting to believe that I may have been scammed.




Tonight, I wrote a note to Jeff on the wall of the Facebook group saying:

"Hi Jeff! I've called multiple times about Lemaan, and have been unable to reach you, despite the fact that my horse is supposed to be transported in three days! Please call me when you can." My message was immediately deleted from the group's wall ... and Jeff didn't call me... :cry:


Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions on how I should proceed, or if this organization is a scam? Thank you so much.

OutOfTheLoop 06-30-2013 11:41 PM

I sure hope you didn't get scammed, I seen the pic of your horse posted June 10th. If he doesmt get back to you, I would contact the authorities and screen shot as much of that facebook page as you can with names and such.
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littleamy76 07-01-2013 12:02 AM

Oh really? I had just came across them just 2 days ago and was looking at the same exact horse as you, although I have no plans to purchase. Pretty horses but I was wondering the same thing as you. I had found the transporter's facebook page that they use and some of the postings from the guy that runs it seems kind of rude. I've also noticed most if not all of the horses they are adopting out are not registered. If you do not receive your horse that you paid for in 3 days or hear back from him, contact authorities. Please update us as to what happens so I know to avoid them in the future.

OutOfTheLoop 07-01-2013 12:04 AM

I took it upon myself to search for a Dr Hughes that they use near Glasgow, and I couldnt find anything. I only searched for a minute. Might be something you could look for and get a contact number for.
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SweetBriarVixen 07-01-2013 01:17 AM

Update: ***Thank you everyone for your quick feedback*** Thank goodness I followed your advice and took a million screenshots, OutoftheLoop. Best suggestion EVER. The SOKY Equine Development Center page on Facebook has suddenly (in the last hour!) been deleted. Looks like this was indeed a scam. I will be calling the police and the FBI in the morning and reporting Jeff *****. WOW.

OutOfTheLoop 07-01-2013 06:36 AM

The page is still there, although if they blocked you, you cannot even find them in a search.
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SweetBriarVixen 07-01-2013 08:18 AM

Interesting - no wonder he's been getting away with this. If someone voices suspicion, they're blocked. Heading to the police station and also going to report this fraud to the Internet Crime Center. Hopefully they'll be able to stop this guy.
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equiniphile 07-01-2013 08:28 AM

I would send a certified letter to him asking him to confirm that the horse will arrive on _____ day or you expect reimbursement.....or something along those lines.
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Tracer 07-01-2013 09:26 AM

Honestly, I was suspicious the moment I saw that add. I call my animals 'sexy' in pure sarcastic jest, but to advertise a horse as sexy... It screams scam to me. I'm sorry you got sucked in. I very nearly had the same thing happen to me, but the scammer left a lot of loopholes (a $1000 5 y/o Friesian gelding that jumped 6ft jumps and that would be flown from NZ to Australia for no extra charge. I was so naive!).

SweetBriarVixen 07-01-2013 09:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tracer (Post 2940010)
Honestly, I was suspicious the moment I saw that add. I call my animals 'sexy' in pure sarcastic jest, but to advertise a horse as sexy... It screams scam to me. I'm sorry you got sucked in. I very nearly had the same thing happen to me, but the scammer left a lot of loopholes (a $1000 5 y/o Friesian gelding that jumped 6ft jumps and that would be flown from NZ to Australia for no extra charge. I was so naive!).

Yeah, I originally saw an ad for a different horse, and looked up SOKY Equine Dev Center on Google, which led me to their Facebook page (which I have since been blocked from, as of last night). They have a very extensive page with tons of professional-looking videos and photos of the horses. Around 500 ppl have "liked" the page. I found the horse I submitted the adoption paperwork for on the Fb page. It wasn't until much later that I found the "sexy" ad on EquineNow. You're right, it's definitely weird. On the Fb page Jeff is constantly adding photos of new (gorgeous) "rescues" and tons of ppl comment on them and thanks him for the great work he's doing... I can't believe I got scammed so thoroughly. He called all my adoption references, including my vet; spoke to me at length about how much he trusted the shipper ( Tack Tavern Transport ), and probably spoke with me 8 times on the phone about the horse's health, background, training, etc. He explained away his failure to email me the finalized paperwork by saying he was off the farm and rescuing other horses. Ugh. I'm at the police station now, they told me to call PayPal first, before filing a report.
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