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N5VAE Aaron Elekes theft/fraud

Discussion in 'Stolen Radios, Scams and Rip-Offs' started by KB3ZUQ, Mar 31, 2018.

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  1. KB3ZUQ

    KB3ZUQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Aaron Elekes, N5VAE
    1702 Lane St
    Laredo, TX 78043
    Texas VHF-FM Society Southeast Coordinator

    Ft-991 serial number 5F070381

    I think the timeline explains best what happened regarding this transaction but a summary is that I bought an ft-991 listed as purchased new from HRO in July of 2017 from Aaron Elekes N5VAE for $800. When received it was found to be an early 2015 model and suffering from the known blown finals issue. We worked out that I would send it to yaesu for repair that he would take care of and that I would receive the radio or refund. He received the radio back from yaesu repaired in December and I have yet to receive the radio or refund and he has become unresponsive to communications.

    I have many many emails and text messages to document my claims. We had many friendly and personal/unrelated conversations via text at certain points throughout this ordeal so I wont post personal info or a word for word transcript of the entire conversation here but can submit photos by request to prove all this.

    9/24/17 1:41pm I sent the initial email in response to the qrz listing to purchase the Ft-991

    9/24/17 10:46pm I paid $800 through his Square account ATM Pro Inc and received an invoice for confirmation

    10/10/17 The package was received via USPS tracking: 9461511699000714093632

    10/11/17 Upon receipt of radio I checked the serial number and noticed that it was manufactured in 2015 and contacted N5VAE to inquire since it was claimed that it had been purchased new from HRO in August of 2017. I would not have purchased the radio if I had known this because of the widely known issue of the early units having blown mosfets but that is not relevant as it is possible that the radio was in fact new and sitting in the back of some warehouse even though it arrived to me with an orange paper $800 price tag stuck on the box.

    10/11/17 The radio was initially found to be suffering from the known blown HF mosfets and N5VAE was contacted about it.

    10/13/17 The radio was confirmed again with additional equipment to be suffering from the early 2015 unit issue of blown mosfets and N5VAE was contacted about it and he contacted yaesu. We worked out that I would send the radio to yaesu for repair that he would take care of and receive the radio back after repair or a refund.

    12/8/2017 I mailed the radio to yaesu for $105 via USPS tracking# EL845283706US

    1/15/18 Contacted N5VAE via text and received reply he was sick

    2/8/18 Contacted N5VAE via text and received reply he was sick again

    2/13/18 I contacted Yaesu and inquired using the unit serial number and was informed it had finals replaced and balanced and a firmware update then returned to N5VAE home address on 12/19/17 with signature confirmation. I text N5VAE about this and he replied asking who I spoke with and that they must have meant Jan 19 and that he would look into it.

    2/16/18 I contacted my lawyer regarding the issue with all the emails, invoices, pictures, and texts and was advised how I might proceed but wanted to give Aaron Elekes the benefit of the doubt as I know life happens and good people can have crappy things happen to them. I notified N5VAE I had done this and he replied that he had contacted the package investigator and thinks he knows what happened and that he would check his storage locker with his christmas decorations.

    2/16/18 Received a picture via text of the radio in a box informing me that he had found it mixed in with his other things and an apology.

    2/22/18 I texted to ask about tracking number for shipment of the radio back to me and received no reply.

    2/28/18 I texted again with no reply

    3/7/18 I texted again with no reply

    3/14/18 I texted again with no reply

    3/16/18 I texted again with no reply

    3/22/18 I texted again with no reply

    3/28/18 I texted again to inform N5VAE I would be filing a police report with the laredo police and received no reply.

    3/31/18 I emailed to inform N5VAE I would be submitting this publicly.

  2. N9LCD

    N9LCD Ham Member QRZ Page


    Report this incident to your local police department.

    We had a problem with somebody "impersonating" us on the phone. I visited their local police department to file a complaint. They told me to report the matter to our local police and they would investigate. I did. The nuisance seems to have stopped.

    See what the East Stroudsburg PD has to say. I won't hurt and may help.
  3. KB3ZUQ

    KB3ZUQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thank you for the reply. When I was advised to file a report I assumed it would be with his police and not mine but I suppose it can't hurt to do both. I wanted to put together a neat timeline and transcript before filing a police report and figured I should post it here as well. Our local police are actually the state police. Stroud regional police department is for the "town" portion of East Stroudsburg and not for the rural area where I am. Although, again, I suppose it can't hurt to do both.

    He is active here and has seen this thread. A seemingly decent and honest guy. I did all my research ahead of time or I wouldn't have chanced a deal like this. Crappy situation, and for my first piece of actually nice radio gear. Such a simple way to resolve the whole thing too.
  4. KA2FIR

    KA2FIR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I believe I bought the last FT-991 from HRO in January 2017. If it was purchased from HRO in July 2017 it was used and not new. Mine has a 2016 build year. Forget month. I think June.

    If you had possession of the radio and sent it to Yaesu for repair why did you have it sent back to N5VAE and not you after it was repaired?
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2018
  5. K2CD

    K2CD Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Aren't Yaesu warranties non-transferable? Might be the reason.
  6. KB3ZUQ

    KB3ZUQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    That the original purchase receipt existed and was included with the radio was a condition of my purchase but I never saw it and it wasn't included. When I received the radio with a 2015 serial and no receipt I was immediately suspicious that it was not new but no way to prove either way. As you can see in the ad picture there is a little orange sticker that says $800.

    It was supposedly still under warranty so N5VAE handled the communication with yaesu and had the option to either refund me or return the radio. Yaesu warranties on the FT-991 were 1 year and non transferable. My address was on the box and taped to the radio when sent to yaesu. My moderated replies take awhile to approve so my apologies in advance for lack of response time.
  7. K2CD

    K2CD Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I believe in mid-2006, around June or July, Yaesu extended their warranty period from 1 to 3 years. I inquired awhile back if the warranties were retroactive, and was told "3 years from the date of purchase", which is ambiguous, but I think in the wake of problems they had with the early 991s blowing finals for no darn good reason, they would have covered it. Maybe the other party was not aware of this. I don't know, and maybe was expecting to have to shell out some money. If he got it fixed for free, didn't even have to pay the shipping to Yaesu (because you already did), then decided to keep it. Well, I have no words I could type here to describe the type of individual you dealt with.
  8. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Sounds like NOS.

    Not sure the seller is responsible because he bought NOS and passed it on.

    Good Luck.
  9. KB3ZUQ

    KB3ZUQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    K2CD: As far as I know it was repaired for free. N5VAE didn't mention a charge and when I spoke to Yaesu they didn't mention there being any charge for repair either. I wasn't too concerned about the length of warranty since all the finals problems seemed to happen right away and then once fixed properly appeared to stay fixed. I knew they changed it to 3 years on the 991A to alleviate concerns buyers had from the bum run of 991's. They would probably have repaired the finals on this serial# unit even if it was out of warranty/transferred but it never came to that as far as I know. I paid for shipping the unit to Yaesu and they paid to ship it back. I never even asked N5VAE to be reimbursed for my shipping fee.

    KA9JLM: It certainly could be NOS and N5VAE never made a claim that it was a newly made radio, just that he bought it new so I can't complain about that. Based on the sale sticker on the box I figured that he bought a clearance unit for $800 so I didn't mind paying $800 for it myself figuring that it could be taken care of by yeasu if it was newly purchased if there turned out to be any issues or I could always repair it myself. Of course whatever I bought from N5VAE (whether new, old, broken, or fixed) I still don't have nor do I have the money I paid for it.

    N5VAE: Feel free to chime in on this thread anytime. I'd love to hear from you. (or email, or text)
  10. W4JRV

    W4JRV Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    just a thought here, yes Yaesu radios warranty are NOT transferable as you stated, and as a law enforcement both state and federal, please file a report and follow through with it. If you need some advise please contact me via my email on qrz...I worked many internet fraud cases.

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