Beware of Stereo Equipment Scam

How would you like to get a great deal on some new, state of the art stereo equipment?
That's the pitch of two fast-talking salesmen who have been making the rounds in parking lots all over Colorado Springs and Pueblo.
They're apparently targeting young men wherever there's a nearby atm.
Aiden McLain says, "I was at a credit union and a couple of guys got out of a white truck and they asked me... hey would you like to buy some stereo merchandise? We have great discounts."
McLain was approached in Pueblo. Wayne Tieken was hit up in his company parking lot in Pueblo West.
Tieken says, "I really did want the thing because I want surround sound in my living room and so the temptation was there and they kept coming down in price."
Tieken paid $400 for the system called Olin Ross after he was shown a slick looking website which claims the system is worth far more, $1,900.
Turns out this nationwide scam has been circulating more than 20 years with the equipment taking on different names, but the game remaining the same.
We took the equipment Tieken got to a pro.
Gary Wrasse is with Listen Up Audio in Colorado Springs.
I asked Wrasse, "Do we know where the product is made ... or who do we contact if we have any problems?" He told us, "Yeah, that's the thing. There is no company so there is no one to contact."
I asked Wrasse, "Is it worth $400?" He answered, "No, I can't tell you what it's worth, but it's not worth much."
Katie Carrol with the Better Business Bureau of Southern Colorado has talked with victims who thought they were getting a bargain.
Carrol says, "The people these guys are targeting are people that they think are going to make a quick decision and have access to an atm."
We tried contacting Olin Ross through its website, but never got a response.
We also tried to reach someone through the web hosting company and ran into a dead end there, too.
Just remember you never, ever get a good deal buying merchandise from strangers in a parking lot.
You don't know who they are, you can't check out their products, and you can't contact the manufacturer. It's all taking place under the radar.
All kinds of laws are being broken here. The men don't have a license to do business in Colorado and they're obviously not collecting sales tax.
Before you buy anything do your homework so you know exactly what you're getting.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Denis Location: Houston on Feb 25, 2010 at 07:06 AM
    These two guys approached me yesterday in a parking lot near Reliant Park in Houston. They were looking to sell stereo equipment for quick cash.
  • by Clyde Location: New York on Feb 13, 2010 at 05:29 AM
    Who would buy merchandise from two guys in a van!? This is so laughable it's hard to believe anyone would fall for this. Anyone buying from a van deserves what they get.
  • by idiot Location: aurora on Mar 24, 2009 at 06:11 PM
    yep, they got me on this one too, i feel pretty stupid now.
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