Stolen card details were used to pay for an Ifor Williams trailer in Co Monaghan, with the machinery merchant losing as much as €4,500 due to the fraud.

The Monaghan merchant warned farmers and fellow machinery dealers to be aware of the fraudulent activity, which he said has affected many dealers across Monaghan and Northern Ireland.

The man owns and operates his own machinery trading businesses and is seeking information on the stolen property. Gardaí are actively investigating.

Fraudulent purchase

The Ifor Williams 16x6 ft trailer is thought to have been transported to the Jonesborough area of Co Armagh.

The Monaghan dealer said the trailer was fraudulently purchased on Thursday 16 September with the “card details going through no problem”.

The individual purchasing the trailer did so over the phone and had sought to have the trailer collected that evening.

Farmers dealing in farm machinery, particularly in border counties, are encouraged to be vigilant.

The merchant said he was careful to ensure the money had arrived in his account and waited until the following day - Friday 17 September - before letting the trailer leave the yard.

The individual purchasing the trailer sent a man with a van to collect the trailer on Friday and, having received payment in full, the merchant “suspected nothing”.

Bank call

On Monday 20 September, he received a call from a bank which flagged that they “suspected” a fraudulent purchase on the card used to purchase the trailer. This was later confirmed to be the case.

The machinery merchant had to return the money to the owner of the stolen bank card and pay bank handling fees of €500 in doing so.

He immediately reported the stolen trailer to gardaí, who are said to be actively investigating.

The Monaghan man asked that all farmers be vigilant for the stolen trailer and to watch out for its serial number, SCKT00000H5141252.

He encouraged all farmers dealing in machinery to never accept payment over the phone and insist on payment via a bank transfer.

Anyone with information about the stolen property is asked to call Monaghan Garda station on 047-77200.