NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Taylor Swift's recent concert in Nashville was one of the hottest tickets in town. One mother learned a tough lesson trying to get tickets to the show for her children.
A few days before Taylor Swift's recent sold out show, an ad appeared on Craigslist offering front row seats for sale.
"She even listed Section 2, seats 4 through 7," said scam victim Lori Barnes.
Barnes' children were thrilled by the thought of being right next to the stage and so close to Swift. They made a big poster they planned to take to the show.
"Maybe like she'd see us and she'd wave to us and stuff," said Barnes' daughter, Gillian.
After Lori Barnes agreed to pay $500 for the four tickets, the seller who called herself 'June Taylor' asked Barnes to wire the money to her out in California.
Craigslist posted warnings about wiring money and urges people not to do it. The website also recommends that people only do business with people who are local.
Barnes mentioned the warnings when she wrote back to the seller and expressed her concerns.
"Well, I'm a little leery about that [sending money this way]," Barnes told the seller.
The seller quickly wrote back, "Craigslist says a lot of things. Doesn't mean everyone there is out to rip people off."
Barnes said the seller went on, "She said, 'Well, there are scammers out there, but, I have children too and I'm out of town and this seems like the best way to do it.'"
With the concert just two days away, Barnes went ahead and wired the money and then waited and waited. She never received the tickets or heard from the seller again.
"I got scammed. I got scammed because I so desperately wanted my children to be a part of something they loved and somebody preyed on that," said Barnes.
Daughter Gillian explained, "It was really mean that they took a lot of money from my mom."
Brother Brayden echoed his sister's frustrations, "I didn't even know there was people like that that would do that. I mean why?"
Lori Barnes then decided to post warnings about the scam on Craiglist, and soon was hearing from other victims across the country.
"I got responses from people in South Carolina and Dallas that they got scammed by the same group or type of people from California," said Barnes.
Barnes said it's terrible how these scam artists are leaving so many fans without tickets, leaving fans of Taylor Swift singing the blues.
"I want the word out there. I don't want anybody else to be taken advantage of the way we were," said Barnes.
The story does have somewhat of a happy ending. Lori Barnes on a whim called the box office the night of the show, and discovered they had some extra tickets they had just released.
They did not get to sit in the front row, as they'd hoped to, but they did get to see the show.
With the ticket scam, NewsChannel 5 Investigates found the scam artists claim to be local, but said they can't use their tickets because they're out of town on a family emergency or family funeral.
Experts said you just can't be too careful on Craigslist. Deal only with people you can meet face to face. Always keep in mind that there are a lot of people on Craigslist that are out to rip you off. Craig's List recommends, never wire money.
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