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I wanted to inform as many saxophone teachers as posslbe about a new version of a scam that is targeting us.
I am listed on saxquest.com as a teacher, and I received this email. After doing a bit of research, I found out that this is actually connected to a previous scam that targeted golf pros. What they want to do is send you a check for 6 months of lessons, and they include extra money and expect you to refund the difference. Of course their check bounces, and hopefully they got your "refund' check before you find out the check bounces so they get your money.

First Name: Gerhard
Last Name: Louis
Email Address: [email protected]
Day Phone:
Night Phone:
Student Needs: Dear Teacher,
I am pleased to contact you, My name is Gerhard Louis, from Brugge in
Belgium. I saw your profile as a registered teacher, hence, my purpose of
contacting you.

I just mail to confirm if my 12yrs old/ 7th grade twins (Paul & Peter),
can join your class so that you can help me offer them lesson based on
your experience. I so much would love their dreams to come true as they
will love to become the best player and I am ready to support them morally
and financially.

I will like you to give me the price of the tutor per hour for my two
sons. Note that they once had a teacher, who lost his wife in a car
accident and decided to stop teaching in order to take proper care of his
family.

We are presently out of state, but arrangement have been concluded for
Paul & Peter to come to Colorado.

Awaiting your swift response.

Best Regards,
Gerhard Louis.

After replying with his requested information, I received:

Dear Shawn,
Thanks for your prompt response and for your readiness to work with my sons. They have elementary education and speak good English, no disability, they are beginners (just enrolled for two weeks with the other teacher); I mentioned this in my first email. At the moment I want them to learn for 6 months and thereafter we shall know what next line of action would be but definitely they should go further. Paul & Peter are ready when you are and I am equally ready to give all my support. I discuss this with a teacher here and she would suggest twice a week lesson for kids like Paul and Peter, so I want us to settle for this unless you mentioned otherwise.

I will like you to give me the specific address (your home) where lessons shall be holding as I have to send it to my cousin Steve that stay in your location and he shall be driving Paul & Peter to and fro the lessons location before and after each class, though he is presently out of state to Australia but he should be back any moment from now and will come together with my sons for the first lesson.

Meanwhile, the fees is no problem, please let me know the total cost for the six months (an hour twice a week) and kindly send to me the name to write on your check, the address to send it to and your phone number(s)/cell#. I guess a US bank certified check is alright.

Finally, my sons will be ready to leave here the moment am able to conclude this arrangement with you, that is finding a good teacher for them. Like I said, I am presently living in Belgium due to work. I travel a lot and would like to conclude the whole arrangement before my sons would come down; only Paul and Peter would be coming down and will stay with my cousin. It is good for me to send the payment to you from here as soon as I have the details from you, I will do just that and the children will commence with the lesson immediately. You may reach me on 0032485718853 should you have any question(s).

Looking forward to receiving your swift response.

Best Regards,
Gerhard Louis.
 

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Thanks for posting this. I was wondering when I got this email...sounded fishy. Never had a parent insist on paying 6 months in advance! I've been corresponding with this guy, but now I'll tell him to forget it. Thanks again!
 

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This one is still definitely going around, just got a variation of it:

Hello,

Am houston from Italy,my son will be coming for a vacation in the U.S,and i want him to be busy throughout because he his a bit playful.
Therefore, i just want to know maybe he can always come to you and be his tutor so he can learn from you. If possible,please get back to me with the cost of your teaching for the next month i mean for the whole Month of december. He will be coming to your home for 1 hour each day, I have scheduled a guardian that will always drive him down to your place. My boy's name is Terence ,he is 15 years old. I want to know the total amount for an hour each for the total month of DECEMBER. So that i can arrange for the payments.If its going to work, Kindly get back to me with the amount per each for the total month of NOVEMBER and your mailing address.u can get me back on my private email [email protected] ,i will be waiting to see ur mail soon,bye for now.

Regards,

Houston.
 

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Yes, this is a scam. Similar scams have been going on for a long while targeting dance teachers, and probably all sorts of teachers and service providers.

A long while ago, I got a version of this scam asking for dance lessons, and after some emails back and forth, I gave a studio address and a price.

Next, I got messages with stories explaining an overpayment they sent, and dire need for me to send funds to them with various explanations, and that if I could be kind enough to send funds before the over payment arrives...

I never sent funds, and I never saw a payment.

I'm a lucky guy to get such business proposals. I'm so lucky, I've been winning internet contests and foreign lotteries for years without even entering...
 

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I don't see how this scam can be dangerous if you conduct yourself in a business-like manner. (Selling music lessons IS running a business)

The cheque has been sent for the wrong amount? I will return the cheque to them so they can reissue the cheque for the correct amount. Alternatively (if they prefer) I will present the cheque and refund the difference as soon as the cheque has cleared and the funds are in my bank. I would give the customer the choice, but either way there is no risk to me.
 
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