A Portersville man lost approximately $3,800 after purchasing excavation equipment through a popular Internet auction site.

The man told state police that he is self-employed. He was shopping for a small skid-loader and looked on eBay.

He then contacted the reported owners, a man and woman in New York City, via e-mail. They exchanged numerous e-mails regarding the purchase, between Jan. 20 and Feb. 4.

The man sent $3,783.99 via Western Union to whom he believed was an eBay cash agent in New York City, he told police. The money was picked up but the man has been unable to contact the seller of the item since then, he said.

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