Scammed by IG user pokemon_vip not refunding?

What’s up everyone,

I wanted to share my experience buying from a user on Instagram by the name of pokemon_vip (profile link) and just wanted to see if I’ve been scammed or if I’m just being unreasonable.

Back in early November a friend had messaged me saying that someone on Instagram happened to get a Black Label of the Goku Awakened Power card from DBS – which at the time I thought could not be possible given how poorly printed the card was, the limited quantity (it was a one and done), and not one had yet to be given out since its release. Plus having sent many copies to Beckett myself I knew first hand just how hard it is.

So I contact the seller to show a video that it’s in his possession, which he does provide, and then ask whether there is any print line defect on the card (a specific flaw that the card was known to have suffered as part of the poor print quality I mentioned earlier), and he told me he couldn’t see any.

After that we came to terms on a price and sent the payment - so far so good. Then things go a little weird. He later messages me saying that he wanted to include a surprise gift as a show of thanks for the purchase. While I appreciated the gesture I really just wanted the card, but didn’t want to cause any trouble so I said sure. Then I get a message while he’s at FedEx saying that he had to use ground shipping (!) for sending because the total weight with the extra stuff made the price far too expensive to do express. This was the first red flag for me as everyone knows high end items should always be sent express, not a week of shipping! But at that point there isn’t much I could’ve done, so again just to avoid any trouble I just went with it.

So the week after I receive the package, and immediately open it to make sure everything was okay. Lo and behold, it took me a mere few seconds to see that the card did in fact have a print line! Image below:

As someone who’s been chasing this card for a while, I’ve gotten pretty good at spotting flaws so I told myself maybe I’m just really good at it and he probably just missed it. So right away I get back on Instagram and show him what I found.

But rather than having to deal with the hassle of a full refund and sending the card back, I tried to offer him something in the middle of what I had originally paid and what typical gold BGS 10’s go for since the premium I paid ultimately did not match what I was told but still reasonable based on the going rate of gold 10’s are for the card. Since it happened to also be the week of Thanksgiving I told him to think it over since even if he did just want the card back I wouldn’t want to risk shipping it until after the holidays to avoid any risks of lost shipment. Thanksgiving comes and goes and I check in to see what his decision is and he tells me he’s decided to sell it with PWCC instead and so he’d rather have the card back for a full refund.

So okay, I take the card down to the post office and express it back to him and gets in his hands after a couple days. After he confirms that he’s received it, I mention to him my Paypal for the refund payment…couple days go by and still nothing shows up in my account so I hop back on Instagram to see what’s going on. Then he drops this on me:

Apparently I needed to wait until after his card is sold on PWCC’s next auction block before I can get my refund - something that he claimed we agreed on yet was not once ever mentioned in our conversation. I even tried explaining to him this would be like you going to a store to return something and them saying you won’t receive your money until we sell it. At this point, I seriously began to question his legitimacy given this was the third red flag and really the most blatant one since he literally wouldn’t give my money back after receiving the card back. I tried to explain that my intent was never to buy then return, but that when the only concern I had was a flaw that he said was not there but actually was, then this was not a fair purchase. But he continued to maintain his innocence and emphasize that until the next auction I won’t get my money back.

And that’s that. It’s now been more than 4 days and haven’t had any replies from my messages or any kind of refund sent back which is why I wanted to bring this experience to the E4 community and hear your thoughts. Does anyone know or have bought from this seller before? Am I being unreasonable with my approach and askings or is this on the seller?

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Obviously its reasonable to get your money back. Just go talk to PayPal and open a case against him. You should get your money back no problem even if he doesn’t have it they will put his account negative.


Open up a case against him, total bullshit if there aren’t any hidden messages that you aren’t bringing forth. Amazing how many people have extremely poor business practices in this market and can still be “respected” because they have a few thousand “followers” on the internet. Again, like to see his response to this post if there isn’t a second side to this coin but looks bad from this perspective.


You wanted a BGS 10 Black Label and that’s what you got. 3rd party grading is subjective and IMO you are being unreasonable.


The seller agreed to a return and didn’t refund. Literally nothing else matters.


How is it subjective if the defect was asked about and is observable? He wanted it without a line and that isnt what he got. Its unreasonable to make him wait for a refund pending another sale, just shows how bad the seller is with money.


Sounds like people shouldn’t be buying things then. If it’s easily visible in the buyers pictures it would have been in the sellers original photos as well. But here we only have one side of the story and a lack of data. Yet everyone jumps on the bandwagon of this random buyer. This is the reason ebay has so many issues and scams because sellers have no protections and because buyers feel entitled.

There isn’t a bandwagon. If the seller agreed to a return and didn’t refund, they are inherently in the wrong.


Agreeing to a refund is one thing, but if it is off of ebay it becomes more difficult. As far as the item being returned vs when the refund is issued. It opens up an opportunity for the buyer to scam the seller. But as I said we only have half of the story. Perhaps you should message Pokemon_VIP to come and tell us his side of the story.

Do we have proof of this? Is there tracking or only the word of the original poster? Also do we even know the name of Pokemon_VIP to prove who he is in reference to a purchase or return?

Sounds like a case where the seller has spent all the money and cant afford to refund the buyer. Hence awaiting for pwcc to auction it off.

Poor practice from the seller.


Did you send it back to him without getting a refund first?

It’s the 2 goat on a bridge scenario. If the seller refunds first before receiving the card, he worries that the card won’t be returned to him. If the buyer sends it back first, he worries this exact case might happen. But it’s common practice to return to the seller first then the seller issue the refund after making sure the card return is the card sold.

As stated above, the seller might have already spent the money and wasn’t expecting a return hence the future PWCC auction.

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There is so much wrong with this whole transaction but…none of it matters. The seller offered a refund and the presumption is upon receipt of the return, you’ll get a refund.

Now if the seller has to delay the refund they should have stated that before the return.


Thanks everyone for the feedback, admittedly I’ve never done a purchase like this nor have experience with this seller in general so that’s why I wasn’t exactly sure if I was just taking crazy pills or if I was actually being scammed.

The issue was not that I didn’t get the Black Label, the issue was prior to any agreement or purchase I specifically asked whether the card had a specific defect and he claimed that it did not have it, therefore what I was told and what I received were not the same. You don’t think that merits a refund?

As I mentioned, just because it’s a line that I easily noticed doesn’t mean that I can assume he noticed it. In case like this I tend to give the benefit of the doubt so that’s why I never accused him of deceiving or trying to lie to make a sale because I honestly don’t know. At the end of the day I tried to be as clear as I can about what I was looking to buy, and upon receiving something that didn’t match that, I was very transparent and upfront with him on it. I’m not exactly sure what other “data” I can share? I’ve shown detailed screenshots of both my honesty about what I was looking for as well as the item in question and why I wanted a refund. What other evidence would I need?

No seller is going to refund before getting an item back


I’m not sure if you’re just trying to play devil’s advocate or you just want to bucket me in with all the bad buyers out there looking to scam but there is literally zero benefit for me to buy and then return an item and then share the story with the community.

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Isn’t that how it always works? If I don’t take the first step then how else can I get my money back or have him confirm the print line that I mentioned. Similar to the store analogy that I mentioned in my original post - you can’t go back to a store and ask for your money back before giving them the item. You need to first hand it back, have them inspect it and verify your reason for return, and only then will they process your refund.