Identify Unknown Internet Fraudsters With John Doe Lawsuits
If you do not know
the true identity of the person who defrauded
you, you may be able to file a civil suit in
your county using a John Doe for the
defendant's name. You would need to
provide all the e-mails, letters, wire
transfers, etc. that show you do not know the
identity or location of the defendant but that
you have a clear basis for your civil claims.
Your purpose is not to file for a monetary
judgment initially but to obtain a subpoena
for the ISP and e-mail providers of the
unknown fraudster in order to obtain the
person's name and address so that you can file
a civil suit.
It is also possible
to subpoena eBay and PayPal for information
they have on the person's true identity if the
fraudster used their services in the
fraudulent transaction. This is the legal
process used to obtain the identities of the
unknown defendants in the music download
trials and by large corporations such as
Microsoft to sue Web site owners for spam.
These lawsuits were filed in Federal District
Court and it is probable that your small clams
court and county courts will tell you to go to
Federal District Court to file your case.
Below are links to information on John Doe