Las Vegas woman catches bogus modeling offer on Craigslist
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- So many people go online to find a job these days. But a valley woman says after responding to an ad, something didn't seem right.
"I started age 8, back in L.A. I had an agent," says Whitney Hazlewood.
She's been in the modeling business most of her life.
"I was going to auditions every week," says Whitney.
She's done everything from print ads to commercials. So naturally she jumped at the chance when she found this modeling job posted on Craigslist last month.
"I sent them pictures from my previous print work and they asked my sizes," says Whitney.
She says at first, everything seemed legit. But after a few emails back and forth, something caught her attention.
"A lot of the grammar, it seemed like maybe they were from another country," says Whitney.
Whitney showed us some of those emails. Like this one, that reads: "The shooting will hold at a rented photographers studio. The date for the shooting is not fix, I will have to make arrangement for that ahead from now."
"It was pretty fishy," says Whitney.
It was a few days later, when Whitney learned they wanted to hire her and she got this email, which says: "I will like to inform you that you have finally been chosen for the shooting." But something else was bothering her.
"We're going to send you a check before the shoot," says Whitney.
The email said they were mailing a check for $2,400, instructing Whitney to keep a portion for herself but to wire the rest to a third party.
"Anything involving Western Union on a Craigslist ad. I don't know, red flags come up," says Whitney.
That's when she says she decided to email Contact 13.
"I know you get paid either on the day or they send a check to your agent. I know how it works," says Whitney.
In the end, she never got the check because she didn't take the job. She says she had just too many concerns. The Better Business Bureau says Whitney did the right thing.
"No one really gives you a check first, up front. There's no one really that trusting," says Katie Robison with the BBB.
She says many scams involve asking people to send funds through Western Union or Money Gram.
"Wiring money makes it virtually impossible for anyone to trace where the receiver is picking up these funds," says Katie.
That's exactly why Whitney didn't feel comfortable moving forward with this modeling job. And she says, she plans to be very careful about where she looks for her next job.
"Are you going to be on Craigslist looking for modeling jobs anytime soon," asks Tricia. "I don't think so," says Whitney.
So here's the Contact 13 bottom line. The BBB says if you do receive a check from someone you don't know, look at the postage. Many fake checks come from Canada and other countries. And don't just deposit the check. Ask your bank to verify if it's legit. And remember the FBI does investigate Internet scams like this.