I use to work for a guy like that when I was selling computer parts in South Florida.
Customer calls looking for a specific part (IBM FRU Number) and the boss man would say, "Ya let me see how many I have in stock."
Knowing he had none in stock, he would make a few quick phone calls looking for the parts the customer requested. After locating the parts he would call the customer back (usually a service company) and let them know he had them in stock ready to ship.
He would go as far to give them a bogus tracking number and let them know the parts have shipped! The next day when the parts didn't arrive to the customer's location they would of course call and find out what happen. He would always sound so concerned letting the customer know he would get to the bottom of it and find out what happen.
He would call them back after 10-15 mins. (after he was done eating his bagel) and tell the customer "oh it was the new guy in shipping, he didn't get the parts out" Ofcourse it was...
Usually to save money he would bring the parts in 2-3 day meaning there were 2-3 days he would not be in the office, or just plain lie to the customer telling them the parts shipped.
Anytime, a salesman tells you it was the shipper’s fault! It's a lie! LIES ALL LIES!!!
Anyway stuff catches up to you because he too is no longer in business. It didn't help him by stiffing his vendor's every chance he got, (The checks in the mail deal) and lying to his customer's most of the time.......
Oh! BTW, The 3 years I worked there the company changed names 3 times!!! (or maybe it was 4???)