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Fakes could cost Burnsville coin firm


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A California company that certifies coins wants the local firm to cough up profits allegedly made by selling counterfeits.

 

Robert Webber says he spotted the 1845 U.S. silver dollar as a Chinese counterfeit the minute he saw it.

 

Webber, of Goldsboro, N.C., returned the bogus coin to Burnsville Coin Co. last year for a refund of $449. He included a note warning that the other two coins he had ordered, at a cost of $12,400, must be certified as authentic by the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) -- or else.

 

It appears that Burnsville Coin owner Barry Skog is about to find out what that means.

 

Webber said the other coins he received -- 1851 and 1858 silver dollars -- not only were fakes, but also were encased in counterfeit PCGS holders. He showed them to PCGS representatives at a Boston coin show last year, and its parent company, Collectors Universe Inc., filed a lawsuit Dec. 7 against Skog and his company in a California federal court alleging trademark infringement. (...)

 

(more: http://www.startribune.com/business/119371484.html)

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The counterfeit industry is truly a blight on Numismatics. I'm glad to see that someone is taking some corrective action.

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Allegedly, he is not just an honest dealer who was victimized.

Collectors Universe suspects that Skog has coins made to order in China, complete with specific dates and mint marks, Vartian said.

 

Webber said he filed a complaint with the Minnesota attorney general's office and was told that when it started doing research on Skog, investigators learned that he was in China, "looking for certain dimes."

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WOW, thanks for posting that article.

 

It's absolutely outrageous that it has come to the point where dealers and businesses collaborate with the manufacturers of fakes for profit... what's worse, is I'm sure this Skog guy isn't the only one. It really knocks the wind out of TPG's and the claims of "safety" that they make... personally, I don't own any graded coins, and I don't have any "expensive" coins in my collection, partly because they're not really affordable but partly because I'd be afraid it's a really good fake that I paid top dollar for.

 

The TPGs need to come up with a new system that guarantees their slabs authentic, not just serial numbers and hollograms, it's 2011, not 1991.

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I came across this article a few days ago, but we'll see what comes of it as we truly only have one side of the issue. Recently, we should all remember that one side of the story was given to us in another recent PCGS fiasco which may not had been all that it was made out to be. When all is said and done in court, then we'll know for sure. I find it interesting also that the individual's whereabouts would be disclosed by the State's Attorney General's office during an open investigation. Seems more to be the kind of information such entities divulge in affidavits, warrants, and court filings, not in talks with the general public.

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I've noticed that on the Chinese fake PCGS slabs, the slightly different shape of the letter "G" in "PCGS" compared with the original is a giveaway. There are articles on the internet with more details on how to spot the fake slabs (also the fake NGC slabs), but I don't have time to hunt for them right now (I think they are in some of the earlier threads on this forum, though).

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