There are many variations on similar scams targeting artists. Many artists wonder how these sorts of scam works. Even owners of large artist sites have been asking how the scam works. Well, an artist named Judy played the scam out far enough to get a check and explains the scam below:
“There is an Art Scam that is going around that you need to be aware of. I know because I’m currently in correspondence with the scammer who calls herself/himself “Gretta White”.
I received an email from “Gretta” saying, “Hope this message finds you well. I saw these creative works on your website and I will like you to get back with more details if they are still available for purchase.” She then proceeds to give me the titles of 2 of my art pieces. I wrote back with details of the pieces. She then writes back and asks what inspired me to make the pieces.
In following emails, she tells me that she is expecting her first child and that she and her husband are currently moving from New Jersey to London. Then she says she’s in Cancun for her sister’s wedding. Then she was in the hospital in Cancun because she almost had a miscarriage. Of course I wrote back to say how sorry I was that she was ill and I’m glad she’s feeling better.
Then she wants my address so her husband can send me a check and she can notify her “cartage company” so they could arrange the pick up of my work.
I suddenly had a feeling that I needed to learn more about Gretta White so I googled her name. There she was under “Gretta White Art Scam”. The person calling herself/himself “Gretta White” supposedly has her husband send the artist a check with an over-payment of thousands of dollars. She then says her husband made a mistake and included the shipping charge so would the artist please go ahead and deposit the check in their own bank and Western Union the over-payment back to her husband. Of course the check is fake but it takes the bank a while to find out. In the meantime the artist has just sent real money to Gretta’s husband.
I now have the check that Gretta’s husband sent me. The check is $2,000.00 more than the price of my art. I received an email from Gretta today asking me to go ahead and deposit the check and she’ll tell me where to send the Western Union.
The check was sent by a Fred Stellato in Bethlehem, PA. (Gretta told me they lived in New Jersey.) The check is from OMICS Publishing Group in Westlake, Los Angeles, CA. I plan to keep it as a souvenir.
PLEASE BE AWARE OF SCAMS LIKE THIS, WHETHER IT’S UNDER GRETTA WHITE OR CARMEN GONZALEZ, OR WHAT OTHER NAME THEY THINK OF.”