Man admits running luxury watch scam

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A Wanganui man conned two Canadians out of almost $30,000 by selling them bogus luxury watches. Photo / Thinkstock
A Wanganui man conned two Canadians out of almost $30,000 by selling them bogus luxury watches. Photo / Thinkstock

A Wanganui man conned two Canadians out of almost $30,000 by selling them bogus watches, claiming the items were for sale were luxury brands Rolex and Patek Philippe Nautilus.

Shane Arnold Goodgame, 26, pleaded guilty to two charges of obtaining by deception over $1000 when he appeared in Wanganui District Court yesterday.

Goodgame posted two watches, purported to be a Rolex and a Patek Philippe Nautilus, online for sale.

In May 2011, a man from Canada saw the Rolex advertised and emailed Goodgame to ask about the year of the watch.

He was told it was a 2008 Daytona model.

After several emails, the pair agreed on a purchase price of $7,132.01 (US$5,800). The amount was deposited into Goodgame's bank account on May 26.

A few days later the victim discovered Goodgame's email address no longer existed, and he never received the watch.

On August 11, another victim, also in Canada, emailed asking about the Patek Philippe watch, and over a series of emails, a purchase price of $22,581.65 (US$19,600) was agreed.

On September 2, Goodgame received the money in his account and emailed the victim, thanking him for his payment.

The victim never got the watch and all email contact ceased on September 8, with Goodgame's email address becoming invalid.

The victim attempted to get his money transferred back, but was advised it was not possible.

Bank records show within three weeks of receiving the money, Goodgame had spent it all.

Among his purchases were clothing and electrical items, including an Apple iPhone valued at $1099.

Police searched Goodgame's house on January 31 and found the Rolex watch, clothing and iPhone.

The Rolex was inspected by a watchmaker and deemed to be fake.

The victims are both seeking reparation and the police have requested the seized items to be forfeited because they were obtained through the proceeds of a crime.

When spoken to by police, Goodgame admitted the facts, saying it seemed "too easy" that someone would willingly pay that amount of money for a watch he did not have to send.

He admitted knowing it was wrong and said it "felt good" to have money and buy things.

Goodgame's counsel Stephen Ross said Goodgame had appeared in March last year on a charge of obtaining by deception under $500, and needed a pre-sentence and reparation report.

Goodgame was on a benefit and there was nothing left of the money.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Rachael Willemsen said Goodgame was at risk of reoffending while at home on bail and the offences were serious, involving a large amount of money.

Judge Dugald Matheson said his initial thought was to remand Goodgame in custody, but he wanted to keep reparation options open.

He told Goodgame he regarded reparation as hugely significant as to whether he went down the stairs [to the cells] or out the door following his sentencing.

It was serious offending and "your future liberty is in your hands", the judge said

Goodgame was remanded on bail to reappear on May 2 for sentence.

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