(InvestigateTV) - Americans around the country say they took a job receiving and shipping packages from home but never got paid.
The packages included strange items - from clothing to gold. The Better Business Bureau calls it a scam.
Keesha Robinson had a living room packed with boxes going nowhere. It was the unshipped remains of a work-from-home job the Augusta, Georgia woman did for one month.
“Please don’t do it. No matter how much they say it’s a legitimate place to work for, don’t fall for it,” Robinson said.
Robinson said she never got paid.
The job started with an email from a company called BlueTex LLC. The company said it found her resume on a job board. She already had a job, and this was just going to be extra money.
This is what was supposed to happen: BlueTex LLC shipped packages. The employee would open them, take photos, make sure everything was correct and then re-ship them on to their destination. The base salary on the job offer was listed at $1,200 a month, with a bonus of $40 for every package shipped.
“So, I figured OK that seemed easy enough, and it was just because of the COVID virus. Instead of them just sending it straight through, they wanted to make sure the person was getting what they ordered,” Robinson said.
Robinson did an interview and found out she got the job. The company sent official-looking documents. It asked her to send a copy of her driver’s license and create a PayPal account to get paid.
“I thought it was legit I looked it up, I’d seen that they had an address based in Richmond that came up and everything. So I was like OK I’ll try it out,” Robinson said.
InvestigateTV went to the Richmond, Virginia address listed. There’s an entirely different company there.
That company also has “blue” in its name but says it has nothing to do with BlueTex LLC.
In fact, this company - BlueLinx - says its phones are ringing off the hook with people calling about Blue Tex. Employees at the Richmond office said they understand the frustration and are trying to spread the word that they are not BlueTex.
“This is one of the most active scams out there right now,” said Barry Moore with the Better Business Bureau. “I mean we’ve had hundreds and hundreds of people that have signed up for this easy $1,200-1,600 every other week paycheck just for being an intermediary shipper.”
Moore said people have complained from across the United States. The BBB’s scam tracker- shows victims reporting from Texas, Florida, South Carolina and Indiana.
A person in Florida wrote, “Beware of getting paid.”
A man in Tennessee gave the business his social security card, driver’s license, the account and routing number to his bank for direct deposit. They even had him fill out a tax form.
There is still a question about why and what is really being shipped - but either way, the BBB says it’s not something to mess with.
“You don’t know whether the things you’re forwarding are actually a hot merchandise or whether they’re brushing meaning they send things and then claim people are writing great reviews about the product. It’s all a scam,” Moore said.
Robinson said the company was demanding when the packages arrived, asking her to ship them immediately.
“They would call, and they knew I had a daytime job. They would call me while I was working, ‘Hey, I we know you got this package. We see that it came. Can you go ahead and take the pictures and upload them? Can you go ahead and ship it out today? We need this done ASAP.’”
After a month of driving back and forth to UPS or the post office, pay day arrived. Robinson said the company stopped answering calls and eventually blocked her.
InvestigateTV tried to track down BlueTex. Their website is down, and every email attempted has bounced back. Phone numbers listed are disconnected. The BBB has traced the initial web address to a Ukrainian company.
If you may have fallen victim to something similar, the BBB said you should pull your credit report weekly and change any bank account numbers you gave out. Further, they say to contact the postal inspector’s office so it can investigate.