Police: Robbers Using Online Classified Websites

42 Division (Toronto Police Services)  is cautioning Torontonians to be careful when contacting and meeting strangers using online classified websites.

42 Division would like to remind our community members to be extra vigilant when using online classified websites. Some of these websites are quite extensive and provide local classifieds with regards to forums for jobs, housing, merchandise for sale, personals, services, as well as information on local community events.

The suspects are contacting and meeting the victims under the guise of buying or selling property then robbing them at the locations or taking them somewhere else.

People are urged to be very careful when meeting people through any classified advertisement.

If you are planning on purchasing or selling merchandise on the classified websites, the following are suggested:

1. Have someone accompany you to conduct the transaction.

2. Make arrangements to meet in a very public place frequented by many people.

3. Let someone know where and when you are meeting the person.

4. Have your telephone pre-dialled to someone who you have pre-arranged to call the police if they receive a non-verbal call from you. If you get into trouble, push the send button.

5. Be observant and if something does not seem right, do not continue with the arrangement. Immediately leave the location and if applicable, call the police.

6. Do not agree to meet at another location. Disregard the transaction if the other person insists on meeting somewhere else in order for them to obtain the money or the merchandise after they meet you at the original location, or going to another location to complete the deal.

Safety is the most important part of the equation.