A couple who lost £300 to an internet fraudster are warning others to be careful when shopping online.
Stacy Beattie tried to buy a £600 Canon camera from a private seller on a Facebook page as a Christmas present for husband Alan.
Mrs Beattie agreed to initially transfer half of the asking price to the seller in Nuneaton before sending the remainder after she had received the camera.
But the camera never arrived. Mrs Beattie said: “We should have checked more thoroughly. We thought we were dealing with a woman but we have learned it was in fact a man. I don’t want others to lose money as we had.
“Be aware that there are people who will take advantage of those that are struggling. Always use Paypal.”
The couple had found the advert for the camera on the ‘UK Photography Equipment for Sale’ Facebook page.
Mrs Beattie had been nervous about the sale but then agreed to transfer half the money into a bank account and sent a message informing the seller it was sorted.
After nearing nothing for 48 hours she then received a message from the woman stating that her daughter had been rushed into hospital.
Within 20 minutes the seller and the listing were no longer on Facebook.
The couple, who live on the Fairstead estate in Lynn with their three children, later learned that other people had been duped in the same way.