N Sizer – Written evidence (FDF0027)

 

This document shows an example of how far short of reasonable behaviour many firms selling items online or supporting those firms selling online are currently behaving.

  1. On the 19th November2021, Mr Sizer, a film maker, purchased a filming prop for £550 from an Ebay seller. Mr Sizer used a PayPal Account to pay the seller and funds were sent and received. The seller then paid for the courier firm XDP to collect the item from the sender 4PX, a Chinese firm with warehousing all over the world including the UK. The film prop was collected and sent to XDP Thetford for local van delivery. On the 1st December 2021, the local XDP driver set out with two parcels with nearly identical postcodes. The XDP van driver delivered the wrong parcel to Mr Sizers address. He misdelivered Mr Sizers parcel to somewhere else. The location of where it was left has never been found out.
  2. Mr Sizer contacted the seller via the ebay messaging system hoping he would contact his courier and fix the mis-delivery The response Mr Sizer received was shocking as the seller accused Mr Sizer of fraud. The seller had received an e document from XDP, the courier firm, which was forwarded to Mr Sizer. It had 8 capital letters scrawled on it “SIZER IPO”. Upon examination, this is courier driver shorthand scrawled on the drivers signature PDA.  IPO In the Presence OF meaning the driver was not getting a signature but handed the parcel weighing 38Kg (the equivalent weight of a small teenage child) over to someone who identified themselves deceitfully as Mr Sizer.
  3. The courier firm XDP has a website and a premium rate phone number for calling them. Two calls lasting 20 minutes, queued with music on hold each were finally abandoned. Emails to XDP were ignored. Messaging on a chat room that infrequently appears on the XDP website were ignored. Eventually Mr Sizer used his research skills to find an address for XDP Thetford the nearest likely depot. Mr Sizer took the wrongly delivered parcel for postcode ending 4ns back to the depot 30 miles away. The depot manager said that he would look into the mis delivery and attempt a retrieval.
  4. There was still no contact from XDP head office. Many days passed and more visits to the Thetford depot for an update finally identified that XDP have a policy of no contact with delivery customers. XDP will only communicate with their sending customers. Eventually it transpired that XDP had made an insurance claim and this was paid to the sender, the Chinese warehouse 4PX.
  5. Mr Sizer had contacted the seller by the Ebay messaging system but was also ignored.
  6. Eventually Mr Sizer contacted 4PX in China asking for an update on the refund. Mr Sizer received a response from 4PX written in Chinese which he translated. It asked for a parcel number identification which was obtained from XDP. This was sent to 4PX and an email was received stating that a refund payment was made to the seller on the 16th February 2022.
  7. No refund has been received by Mr Sizer from the seller.
  8. Emails and recorded delivery post to Ebay asking for action to rectify this situation have been ignored.
  9. Recorded delivery post to the Head of Ebay UK Rob Hattrel has been ignored by Ebay.
  10. Recorded delivery post to the Head of XDP Ltd Louis John has been ignored by XDP.

In summary,

  1. The seller of the item refuses to respond about the non delivery.
  2. The online platform Ebay refuses to offer any response about the non delivery.
  3. The courier firm XDP head office will not deal with Mr Sizer directly.
  4. Mr Sizer believes this is a clever fraud. Either the driver has kept the item to sell on the black market for extra wages or he really did mis-deliver it. Mr Sizer was told by the XDP Thetford depot manager that the van driver left the employ of XDP a few weeks after this alleged mis delivery.
  5. What is needed to solve this problem is a mandatory code of conduct that all these firms have to sign up to which ensures they provide a bona fide complaint handler. The code should also lead to a dispute Ombudsman to solve problems where the internal complaint procedure does not work.
  6. The attitude of just ignoring customers is extremely poor and should not be allowed to continue.

 

I am willing to give evidence in person if required. 

 

21 April 2022