Written on: 19/02/2011
BEWARE OF MONEYGRAM!
Re Claim: CM106424
I am Maria Alejandra Salmon Suarez. Peruvian born, I reside in the UK. I have recently experienced a problem with MoneyGram's services
I am a website designer living in the UK and I am building a website for... a friend since childhood who resides in the USA. Although I don't usually use MoneyGram, on this occasion to make a quick and easy transfer I decided to use their services. My friend set up a money transfer and I went to the MoneyGram office located in the post office in Macclesfied, Cheshire in the United Kingdom.
As in the UK people don't hold IDs like in the USA, I went to the MoneyGram office with my Peruvian passport as the only ID I hold that shows my maiden name. The lady called Debbie at the Post Office here asked me for a second ID with a photo on it as it was a large amount of money ($2.000). I showed her my Peruvian National ID and my Peruvian Military ID. She refused to accept these and asked for UK ID with my UK address. I do not have a UK Driver's License or Passport. Even if I did, these would be in my married name, as are the UK bills etc which are in my name.
Debbie told me that she wouldn't allow me to receive the funds so I asked her to call MoneyGram central office to explain the situation. Debbie refused to do so, telling me that 'she doesn't call nobody' and further more 'she only had 5 minutes to close the office'.
In the mean-time, MoneyGram called my friend who had transferred the funds stating that there were fraudulent transfers being made to my zone in the UK. My friend was subjected to a ten minute interview quizzing him on the legitimacy of the transfer. He is a busy manger of a global business and did not enjoy this inconvenience.
It was implied that because I did not have the expected identifications that there was a likely fraud. There was no mention made of the understandable difficulty of a Peruvian national having two photo IDs in her maiden name, having been married and resident in the UK for nearly ten years.
As a consequence of MoneyGram's false implication of fraud I have not only lost business but also a friend from childhood. This inconsiderate behavior has not only brought into question the legitimacy of my business but also my personal integrity.
I would be extremely grateful if MoneyGram could issue an apology to my friend and me for the misunderstanding caused by their unprofessional behavior. I understand that there is always a risk of fraud, but this is no excuse for potentially libelous implications.
I am fully prepared to go to the press with this and pursue legal avenues - what has hurt me most is that a friend has been placed in a situation where he was completely unjustifiably caused to question my integrity.
Maria Alejandra Salmon Suarez