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Honolulu police warn of ongoing online puppy scams

The Honolulu Police Department and CrimeStoppers are warning the public of an ongoing puppy scam.

Police said there have been reports of people getting scammed while attempting to purchase a puppy online from either Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist.

Here’s how it works: The sellers request a deposit in order to ship or to hold the puppy. The buyer pays the initial deposit, but the seller then ends all communication.

“Be careful when making purchases online and do not pay a deposit to the seller before receiving the puppy,” said CrimeStoppers in a news release. “We encourage the community to make animal purchases through a reputable pet store or consider adopting one from the Hawaiian Humane Society or rescue shelter.”

Anyone with information about the scam should call CrimeStoppers at 808-955-8300. Tips can also be submitted online at, or via the P3 Tips app.

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