As a post for a discussion, on the general subject I'm ok with the OP. As a post to warn us about a specific situation, without specifics, it's not worth much.
As to the general situation, as far as I know, the legal process is not involved until after you don't get your goods by the date promised (with a "reasonable" window of extension). Then, your option is to bring suit in court.
Anytime you pay upfront for something, you risk loss. Rarely, it is a deliberate scam, commonly, its not. We do it all the time with little things, like fast food, but with bigger things, there is always a small risk. ITs up to you to determine if it is justified.
A company in financial trouble can take orders (and payments) until the day they close their doors. ITs not good faith to do so, but sometimes the people taking the orders don't know that. They may not even know the doors are going to be closed, until it happens!
Checking on the business license, and other public records of new or unknown businesses before giving your money seems prudent to me. That kind of "background check" actually has some personal value.
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.