Here is a roundup of alleged cons, frauds and schemes to watch out for.
EBay fraud — A man who defrauded more than 250 people out of about $1.5 million by advertising high-end appliances on EBay and then failing to send the products has been sentenced to more than 12 years in federal prison. A jury in February convicted Darin French, 40, of 22 counts of mail fraud, 11 counts of wire fraud and three counts of money laundering. Prosecutors said French and his wife, Jennifer, who was also convicted, established an online business called Look What We Got that advertised Sub-Zero, Viking and Wolf appliances at discount prices. After initially shipping products to a few customers, the Frenches failed to send merchandise to about 250 customers and kept their victims' money. The couple, who lived in Incline Village, Nev., at the time, established multiple accounts on EBay and gave themselves positive feedback in order to trick customers into believing they were trustworthy, prosecutors said. The couple used the stolen money to buy a $50,000 Bayliner boat and a Ford F-250 pickup truck, prosecutors said. Jennifer French is scheduled to be sentenced July 11.
Wedding scams — With the wedding season approaching, the Better Business Bureau is advising aspiring brides and grooms not to be blinded by love when planning for their big days. The BBB received nearly 1,000 wedding-related complaints in 2010. If you're planning a wedding, the BBB said it's important to research online vendors carefully, review terms of all contracts, keep all receipts and pay by credit card to provide additional protection in the event of a dispute. In addition, the BBB said, it is a good idea to purchase wedding insurance, which can cover potential problems such as no-shows or other unexpected issues.