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Fraudsters buy MN SuperAmerica with bad check, sell everything for half price, then take off

Fraudsters buy MN SuperAmerica with bad check, sell everything for half price, then take off

Forget complicated Ponzi schemes. The "business people" behind a recent scam at the SuperAmerica in Waconia provided a refresher course in good ol' fashioned fraud.

SEE ALSO: Tom Petters, convicted Ponzi schemer, teaches fellow inmates business classes

The previous owner of the SA, a 51-year-old man named Husein Sarameh, agreed to sell his business to as-of-yet-unidentified person or group of people last month for $945,000. The buyers wrote a $203,000 check to cover the down payment and Sarameh, following his lawyer's advice, turned over the reins to the store before it had even cleared. And that's where things got weird.

Last weekend, the new owners held quite the two-day sale. As KSTP reports, they sold gas for $3.85 a gallon -- a ridiculous (and illegally low) price compared to the $4.29 average cost of a gallon elsewhere in Waconia -- and sold nearly everything in the store for half-price. Fifty-thousand dollars later they took off and they still haven't been arrested.

After the down payment check bounced and Sarameh realized he'd been scammed, he reassumed ownership of the SA. More gas discounts are planned for this weekend, though this time the more modest discounts will be legitimate.

Needless to say, the last couple weekends have been good ones for regular customers at the Waconia SA.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.


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