Facebook Marketplace plea after Aussie man’s terrifying ordeal: 'Seemed a bit suss'

The Melbourne man said he's now $1,600 out of pocket after his MacBook Pro was stolen from him.

An Aussie man has shared his terrifying experience of trying to sell an item on Facebook Marketplace, revealing he was robbed of his MacBook Pro and left $1,600 out of pocket.

Melbourne man Adam Metwally said he was attempting to sell the laptop ahead of his flight out of the country this week, but when he met with a buyer in person, the item was swiped from his hands.

Now, the investor and entrepreneur, is warning Aussies of the 'red flags' to look out for when attempting to sell an item online to ensure their safety. His warning comes after growing reports of online scams, including a Perth man who was stabbed during a "snatch and run" last week.

Sharing his terrifying experience in a video on TikTok on Tuesday, Metwally, who goes by meetwally online, revealed, "I got robbed yesterday and it was one of the most f***ed experiences I've ever had".

Melbourne man Adam Metwally explaining his Facebook Marketplace robbery.
Melbourne man Adam Metwally had his $1,600 laptop stolen from him after trying to sell it on Facebook Marketplace. Source: TikTok/meetwally

Man robbed during Facebook Marketplace sale

Metwally said he agreed to meet an interested buyer in an inner-city Melbourne suburb late at night where he presented the item to the unknown man.

"I showed him the box of the laptop, a $1,600 MacBook Pro, and he asked me to check the IMEI number so I flipped the thing over," he explained. "In the process of doing that, he grabs it and bolts down into the park. Then I start chasing him."

Metwally, whose friend was waiting in the car, said he chased the man into a nearby park in an attempt to retrieve the goods but had second thoughts having already thought he "seemed a bit sus" and decided to let him go.

"He might have a knife and he might stab me, or I go around the corner and he's got a big bunch of friends, and they beat the shit out of me so I stopped and let it go," he explained.

Metwally concluded he should have "listened to his gut" and encouraged others to learn from his mistake. "If your gut says something's suss, just f***ing leave because I've lost a $1,600 laptop now — thanks to some scumbag".

'Red flags' to look out for during a Facebook Marketplace meet

Offering some things to look out for, he said, "the first red flag was his name and his profile". He admitted he hadn't properly checked as he was rushing to get to the airport. "I just wanted to get it sold," he said.

"But check the [online] profile and then double-check that they have an ID [that matches]. If they don't, it's not worth it," he added. He also emphasised choosing a suitable time and place.

"He gave me an address that I thought was his house, but the address was not his address," he went on. "Do not meet people unless you're meeting them at a police station or somewhere really safe, because it could have been way worse".

Lastly, Metwally said the man "seemed a bit suss" when he first saw him. So trust your instincts. "Please be vigilant. Please stay safe," he said.

"I've never experienced anything like this before. Just be really careful out there," he concluded.

Experts weigh in on safety during Facebook sales

Speaking of a deadly emerging Facebook Marketplace trend last year, Cybersecurity expert Susan McLean said buyers on Facebook Marketplace had to be wary as some items are likely to attract criminals.

"We know Facebook Marketplace and other online platforms do attract nefarious criminals," she said.

Dr Renee Zahnow, criminologist and University of Queensland lecturer, said you should also avoid meeting a potential buyer at your home address, where possible.

"The best idea is to not give out your home address, but to meet the person in a safe and public place and to take someone else with you," she said, the ABC reported.

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