A Border man has owned-up to a puppy-selling scam that fleeced more than $10,000 from unsuspecting buyers from across Australia.
Michael Nolan touted his pedigree pooches on the online marketplace Gumtree, using a host of pseudonyms to hide his identity.
In several cases, the would-be buyers became suspicious after they had paid their $500 deposits for breeds including dachshunds, a corgi and a toy poodle.
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While some went to the police at this stage, others forked-out far more before they realised they had been deceived.
Four of the nine buyers had transferred their total individual sale prices of sums ranging between $3000 and $3400.
Nolan's offending began last September, though he was not arrested and charged by police until he attended Albury police station on March 17 for what was a pre-arranged meeting.
The Springdale Heights man, 26, a carpenter by trade, pleaded guilty on Monday to nine charges of dishonestly obtain a financial advantage by deception.
Defence lawyer Mitchell Brooks told magistrate Richard Funston that it would be appropriate that he order a sentence assessment report.
Mr Funston agreed, ordering the report and extending bail for Nolan to a sentencing hearing on June 17.
Police told the court that Nolan's first victim replied to an online advertisement on September 30 for a Cavoodle puppy priced at $3000.
Nolan had advertised under the fictitious name of "James Robins".
He asked the victim to transfer a $500 deposit to his bank account.
The victim did just that, but then became suspicious of the transaction and so asked that his money be returned.
Nolan failed to do that, so the victim reported the matter to Caulfield police station in Melbourne.
Eight days later, Nolan's next victim replied to an advertisement, posted by an "Allan Turner", for a dachshund pup.
The victim transferred a $500 deposit before a failed attempt to organise delivery to his home in the Shepparton suburb of Kialla, to be followed by the final payment.
The third victim transferred a $500 deposit to the same seller for a dachshund, but this fell through when the victim discovered someone else lived at the house.
A Coffs Harbour buyer handed over a $1600 deposit for a corgi pup, another paid $3000 for a cavoodle, a phantom toy poodle cost another buyer $3300 and someone paid a "Michelle Nolan" $3400 for another cavoodle.
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