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Important Announcement About Counterfeit Error Coins

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  • fred_weinberg
    For the first time since the late 1960 s, a group of counterfeit error coins has appeared on the market. I ask that all ECIE members take this very seriously,
    Message 1 of 20 , Jul 16 2:12 PM
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      For the first time since the late 1960's, a group of counterfeit error coins

      has appeared on the market.


      I ask that all ECIE members take this very seriously, and understand that

      what I'm stating here is true, but due to certain situations, not complete.

      You'll have many questions, and some I can answer, and some I can't.


      On Ebay, the seller " National1966 ", based in Florida, is selling both

      Certified and uncertified major error coins that are counterfeits.


      This seller, who goes by the name of Charles Silverstone, and/or

      Mike McCoy (among other names, apparently from St. Petersburg

      and Clearwater Florida), is the source of these items, produced

      in Europe. He has been notified by NGC that his coins are

      counterfeit, and he continues to sell them on Ebay, and possibly

      thru other venues, such as direct sales to collectors.


      This seller has 'salted' his Ebay listings with genuine certified coins,

      to legitimize his 'collection' or accumulation of coins, but this is

      purely to deceive the viewing public on his auction pages.


      In the past few months, PCGS, NGC, ANACS, and ICG have

      certified some of his coins - not a huge amount, and we've

      managed to contain some of the damage, but there ARE 

      certified error coins that he's selling that are Counterfeit.

      This seller might also be the source of other counterfeit coins,

      that are not errors.


      I encourage anyone who has purchased coins thru this seller

      on Ebay, and has paid thru PayPal, to contact PayPal for a

      full refund.  (I'm not sure of the exact procedure, or the time limit).


      Anyone who has purchased raw or certified error coins from

      this seller, but paid for them outside of Ebay/PayPal, should

      contact the seller immediately and demand a refund.


      As far as PCGS's policy - I have talked directly with David Hall,

      and he encourages anyone who has ended up with such an

      error coin in a PCGS holder, to resubmit the coin, with any

      appropriate paperwork/invoices, to PCGS under their 

      "Guaranteed Resubmission" tier. These transactions will

      be runback to the original seller, if possible. 


      Contact NGG for their policy - they have taken a very

      agressive posture with these counterfeits, and this seller.  


      I've also talked extensively with ANACS,and they encourage

      the same - send it back to ANACS with paperwork, and 

      ANACS will apply their policy to these coins.


      I also want to say that this new group of counterfeits are

      very impressive, and have, until very recently, fooled over

      10 top authenticators from all four Services, including myself.

      They are excellent fakes, and it took us months to determine

      what was going on with them.


      We now want to stop this seller from continuing his methods

      of selling these items, and to face other actions as warranted.


      There will be more information given, as is possible to release.


      Fred Weinberg


      PCGS Consultant 

      for Mint Error coins

    • stevenamills
      Fred, Thanks for the warning - somebody has been busy. There s one good thing about having very limited funds - I can t afford his stuff! Somewhat interesting,
      Message 2 of 20 , Jul 16 2:40 PM
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        Fred,

        Thanks for the warning - somebody has been busy. There's one good thing about having very limited funds - I can't afford his stuff!

        Somewhat interesting, I guess, is that a lot of his high end coins went to "Best Offer". I wouldn't be surprised of the majority of them ended up in one place.

        Please keep us posted as much as possible.

        Thanks again.....
      • Michael Evanchik
        its interesting to note, many astounding errors all seem to be unifaced errors. wish they were real-some truly spectacular combos.  On Wednesday, July 16,
        Message 3 of 20 , Jul 16 6:20 PM
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          its interesting to note, many astounding errors all seem to be unifaced errors.
          wish they were real-some truly spectacular combos. 


          On Wednesday, July 16, 2014 5:41 PM, "millsteven@... [errorcoininformationexchange]" <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


           
          Fred,

          Thanks for the warning - somebody has been busy. There's one good thing about having very limited funds - I can't afford his stuff!

          Somewhat interesting, I guess, is that a lot of his high end coins went to "Best Offer". I wouldn't be surprised of the majority of them ended up in one place.

          Please keep us posted as much as possible.

          Thanks again.....


        • travisbolton543
          Hi everyone, I ve been out of the loop for a while for several reasons but I ve kept a finger on the market and I have some info to offer which may or may
          Message 4 of 20 , Jul 16 7:26 PM
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            Hi everyone,

            I've been "out of the loop" for a while for several reasons but I've kept a finger on the market and I have some info to offer which may or may not be helpful. I sold a double struck 5C on a 10c planchet to this person sometime in the last 3 years or so on eBay. I have tried to research their name for the sale but I cannot find it in PayPal.
            It is a double struck Jefferson on a 10c planchet with the 2nd strike about 65% O/C that was certified (when I sold it) by PCGS (submitted by me about 5 years ago). He had it for sale recently on eBay re-certified by NGC in the same grade of MS64. It is uniface on the obverse for both strikes. I bought it from Al Levy back in about 2006 or so, and it was raw. I am offering this info because I have noticed an influx of uniface off metals on the market. I believe the coin I sold was not a counterfeit... but if in fact it was, then the deception may go back a few years. Or this may have been a strategic purchase for "salting". ????
             
            Thank you Fred for the announcement!

            Also, for anyone who has tried to contact me recently I'm very sorry if I seemed distant or ignored you. Life sometimes gets in the way....I hope you understand.

            -Travis
          • Sullivan Numismatics
            ItÆs too bad but that is one of the good things about buying slabbed coins (at least from some of the services), which is that you have a chance to get some
            Message 5 of 20 , Jul 17 6:22 AM
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              It’s too bad but that is one of the good things about buying slabbed coins (at least from some of the services), which is that you have a chance to get some or al of your money back if the coin turns out to be counterfeit, as is the case here. If they’d been purchased raw, the only recourse would be legal or to try to get your money back from eBay. 

              It stinks that you’re having to deal with it though.

              Jon

              Sullivan Numismatics
              Specializing in Errors & Varieties
              PCGS & NGC Authorized Dealer
              (931)-797-4888
              P.O Box 1283
              Lawrence, KS 66044






              On Jul 16, 2014, at 10:16 PM, adkinstone@... [errorcoininformationexchange] <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


              Bummer. I bought two of his authenticated as genuine errors:


              PCGS, The one I called "Damn Dirty Apes"


              ERROR, USA,2009-S,ZACHARY TAYLOR,FLIPOVER,D-S IN COLLAR,UNIQUE,PROOF 64 DCAM

               

              And this in  ANACS slab, which reminded me of the awesome stuff that Stienner & Zeimpher had for sale in late 1970's when they were part of MECCA, Mid West Errors Association:


              USA,ERROR,1976,25 CENTS, STRUCK 30% OFF CENTER ON 1 CENT BLANK BROCKAGE, MS 63

               


              I am bummed, I just spent $3,218 on "authenticated" slab crap


              ;^(


              Lindy





            • fred_weinberg
              Good Morning - I ll be updating as I can, but I wanted to add something that was not in my announcement yesterday: Jon Sullivan has been instrumental in
              Message 6 of 20 , Jul 17 7:18 AM
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                Good Morning -

                I'll be updating as I can, but I wanted to 
                add something that was not in my announcement
                yesterday:

                Jon Sullivan has been instrumental  in suspecting
                and analyzing, and identifying  these coins as counterfeits.

                Jon and I had conversations about our suspicions,
                he after examining a group of raw, and some slabbed
                pieces that he was able to look at.  The Uniface
                strikes on so many of the D/S and Off Metal pieces
                perked up my thoughts at  the same time.

                Jon was able to take great close up scans of the
                identification points from the counterfeit dies, and
                make in-hand comparisons.

                A lot happened after that, but I want to state that
                the entire hobby, and especially our error segment,
                owes Jon a big hand for his intellect, insight, and
                help. 

                More info on what lead up to all of this, and what
                occurred after Jon and I, and others, all met and
                saw a large group that we analyzed together, later.


                Fred
              • stevenamills
                Too bad Lindy. I hope getting your money back isn t too big of a hassle.
                Message 7 of 20 , Jul 17 7:32 AM
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                  Too bad Lindy. I hope getting your money back isn't too big of a hassle.
                • Robert Risi
                  Absolutely we all oweJon a round of applause and I will seriously thank him in person when I get a chance to see him. Especially to all the collectors and
                  Message 8 of 20 , Jul 17 7:35 AM
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                    Absolutely we all oweJon  a round of applause and I will seriously thank him in person when I get a chance to see him. Especially to all the collectors and dealers who were affected and purchase coins from this guy as well as the unaffected who are now aware of this ongoing counterfeit production of errorcoins

                    Sent from my iPhone

                    On Jul 17, 2014, at 10:18 AM, "fred@... [errorcoininformationexchange]" <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                     

                    Good Morning -


                    I'll be updating as I can, but I wanted to 
                    add something that was not in my announcement
                    yesterday:

                    Jon Sullivan has been instrumental  in suspecting
                    and analyzing, and identifying  these coins as counterfeits.

                    Jon and I had conversations about our suspicions,
                    he after examining a group of raw, and some slabbed
                    pieces that he was able to look at.  The Uniface
                    strikes on so many of the D/S and Off Metal pieces
                    perked up my thoughts at  the same time.

                    Jon was able to take great close up scans of the
                    identification points from the counterfeit dies, and
                    make in-hand comparisons.

                    A lot happened after that, but I want to state that
                    the entire hobby, and especially our error segment,
                    owes Jon a big hand for his intellect, insight, and
                    help. 

                    More info on what lead up to all of this, and what
                    occurred after Jon and I, and others, all met and
                    saw a large group that we analyzed together, later.


                    Fred

                  • Burton_Strauss
                    Question: Where is eBay on all of this? I notice coordination between PCGS, NGC and ANACS (kudos to all), but... I would have thought a private word from the
                    Message 9 of 20 , Jul 17 7:42 AM
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                      Question: Where is eBay on all of this? I notice coordination between PCGS, NGC and ANACS (kudos to all), but...


                      I would have thought a private word from the heavyweights in the industry to eBay would have caused action on their part. Closed account, listings taken down, something. But nothing seems to have happened there.


                      I guess the recent changes @ eBay have so decimated their anti-counterfeit operations (such that they were) that the cesspit has just grown deeper?!?


                      -----Burton



                    • fred_weinberg
                      PCGS, NGC, and ANACS have all contacted Ebay to take action with this seller. (all three confirmed this with me in phone calls I had with them) As of this
                      Message 10 of 20 , Jul 17 9:14 AM
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                        PCGS, NGC, and ANACS have all contacted
                        Ebay to take action with this seller.

                        (all three confirmed this with me in phone
                        calls I had with them)

                        As of this morning, nothing has been done
                        by Ebay......although all three services are
                        still pressing for action.

                        Yes, it's dissapointing, to say the least.
                      • stevenamills
                        Lindy, Just curious (nosy?). Do the slab numbers show on the respective sites?
                        Message 11 of 20 , Jul 17 11:45 AM
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                          Lindy,

                          Just curious (nosy?). Do the slab numbers show on the respective sites?
                        • Robert Risi
                          Lindy I have 2 phone numbers for Charles, one is now a wrong number as I sent a few short texts to it as well as I called and a woman answered. But I have
                          Message 12 of 20 , Jul 17 12:07 PM
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                            Lindy I have 2 phone numbers for Charles, one is now a wrong number as I sent a few short texts to it as well as I called and a woman answered. But I have another number ending in 4850 which I think is his cell. Can u please share another contact number if u have?
                            Thanks. 

                            Sent from my iPhone

                            On Jul 17, 2014, at 2:06 PM, "adkinstone@... [errorcoininformationexchange]" <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                             

                            Thanks Steve. I have contacted Charles Silverstone to return the counterfeit errors residing in their authenticated PCGS & ANACS slabs I bought from him on ebay. He was quite quick to respond when I bought them, now I haven't heard a word from him yet in reply. This is my first step, second step if he ignores me is contest charges on my VISA, then contact ebay & contact Paypal.


                            I'm curious if he submitted them, but really all I want is a full refund of $3,218.

                            I want piece of mind that if I buy a coin in a slab it's provable price I paid is fully guaranteed by PCGS and ANACS. I doubled printed the entire ads as he did not send me a receipt & I  have the 2 day express USPS packages the lots arrived in. He spent $30.84  to ship the 1976 25c on 1c, and $27.54 to ship the 2009S one sided flip over.


                            I still have one ebay feedback to post, so hopefully this will just be a lesson & not a costly one.


                            Lindy



                          • fred_weinberg
                            Update: I ve been in contact with ICG, and they have no records of any of the names, or error types that Silverstone is involved with. The info that I had that
                            Message 13 of 20 , Jul 17 1:20 PM
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                              Update:

                              I've been in contact with ICG, and they have 
                              no records of any of the names, or error types
                              that Silverstone is involved with.

                              The info that I had that ICG did get submissions
                              from him was wrong - an apparent mis-communication.

                              For the record, there are no ICG Error coins from
                              this Ebay seller/submitter.....

                              Fred


                            • Robert Risi
                              Ok I called that number earlier today and a woman answered saying that he s away or call back in a few days?? I also texted him and emailed him but didn t say
                              Message 14 of 20 , Jul 17 6:30 PM
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                                Ok I called that number earlier today and a woman answered saying that he's away or call back in a few days?? I also texted him and emailed him but didn't say exactly what it was about, just that I wanted to talk

                                Sent from my iPhone

                                On Jul 17, 2014, at 9:23 PM, "adkinstone@... [errorcoininformationexchange]" <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                 

                                Rob, I just have the ending 4850 phone# on one package, no phone number on 2nd shipment. Both have same address. No contact from Silverstone today to my email requesting a return authorization.  I did post him a negative today for ignoring my request on his ebay feedbacks. Anyone else slighted should do same before his account is frozen.


                                I plan do visit ANA headquarters 3 miles from my home Monday or Tuesday to dig thru their MECCA archive looking for a clue to the 1976 25c on 1c. I own some Mid West Error Collectors Association archives I bought from ANA library sales 20 years ago, but ANA should have entire Stienner & Zeimpher publications as they only sell off the spares. I do not recall seeing this piece years back, but a couple similar, so I am curious...


                                Other than ERRORSCOPE I get nothing current in coin related subjects. Some of this very counterfeit crap was published/ pictured as real deal in ERRORSCOPE past 3 years ? It seemed I thought I seen some of those invisible 25c strikes.


                                I've contacted my VISA concerning my $3,218 contested charges so they are aware of this now.


                                Lindy



                              • dermestid
                                Message 15 of 20 , Jul 17 7:32 PM
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                                  <<Other than ERRORSCOPE I get nothing current in coin related subjects. Some of this very counterfeit crap was published/ pictured as real deal in ERRORSCOPE past 3 years ? It seemed I thought I seen some of those invisible 25c strikes.>>

                                  Invisible strikes are well documented in every denomination from cent to half dollar.  I've written extensively on the subject in Errorscope and Coin World and featured many examples.  But none of them were off-metal errors and none were purchased from Mr. Silverman.  I don't recall seeing any suspected counterfeits in Errorscope.
                                • Sullivan Numismatics
                                  It is a shame that eBay is taking so long to take any action against this guy. You would think that if the gradings services who slabbed the coins contacted
                                  Message 16 of 20 , Jul 18 7:04 AM
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                                    It is a shame that eBay is taking so long to take any action against this guy. You would think that if the gradings services who slabbed the coins contacted them and informed them that the coins are counterfeits that they would actually do something about it. Apparently, eBay’s coin department is very poorly run.

                                    Jon

                                    Sullivan Numismatics
                                    Specializing in Errors & Varieties
                                    PCGS & NGC Authorized Dealer
                                    (931)-797-4888
                                    P.O Box 1283
                                    Lawrence, KS 66044






                                    On Jul 17, 2014, at 9:42 AM, burton@... [errorcoininformationexchange] <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                    Question: Where is eBay on all of this? I notice coordination between PCGS, NGC and ANACS (kudos to all), but...


                                    I would have thought a private word from the heavyweights in the industry to eBay would have caused action on their part. Closed account, listings taken down, something. But nothing seems to have happened there.


                                    I guess the recent changes @ eBay have so decimated their anti-counterfeit operations (such that they were) that the cesspit has just grown deeper?!?


                                    -----Burton





                                  • Robert Risi
                                    His eBay auctions really seriously need to be removed. Innocent people are paying big money for counterfeit coins. His account needs to be suspended. He should
                                    Message 17 of 20 , Jul 18 7:10 AM
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                                      His eBay auctions really seriously need to be removed. Innocent people are paying big money for counterfeit coins. His account needs to be suspended. He should not be allowed to sell on eBay period. 

                                      Sent from my iPhone

                                      On Jul 18, 2014, at 10:04 AM, "Sullivan Numismatics jon@... [errorcoininformationexchange]" <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                       

                                      It is a shame that eBay is taking so long to take any action against this guy. You would think that if the gradings services who slabbed the coins contacted them and informed them that the coins are counterfeits that they would actually do something about it. Apparently, eBay’s coin department is very poorly run.


                                      Jon

                                      Sullivan Numismatics
                                      Specializing in Errors & Varieties
                                      PCGS & NGC Authorized Dealer
                                      (931)-797-4888
                                      P.O Box 1283
                                      Lawrence, KS 66044






                                      On Jul 17, 2014, at 9:42 AM, burton@... [errorcoininformationexchange] <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                      Question: Where is eBay on all of this? I notice coordination between PCGS, NGC and ANACS (kudos to all), but...


                                      I would have thought a private word from the heavyweights in the industry to eBay would have caused action on their part. Closed account, listings taken down, something. But nothing seems to have happened there.


                                      I guess the recent changes @ eBay have so decimated their anti-counterfeit operations (such that they were) that the cesspit has just grown deeper?!?


                                      -----Burton





                                    • Sullivan Numismatics
                                      Thanks Fred & All. Although I found the first actual counterfeits, itÆs certainly been a group effort to bring all this to the attention of the grading
                                      Message 18 of 20 , Jul 18 7:43 AM
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                                        Thanks Fred & All.

                                        Although I found the first actual counterfeits, it’s certainly been a group effort to bring all this to the attention of the grading services and also to prove that the rest of the coins where fakes as well, and to just figure out what all this guy has been up to. Fred, Andy Lustig, James Essence, Mike Chambers, and myself all helped figure out this situation initially, and others have also contributed. It’s going to be an ongoing effort to put this guy out of business.

                                        Thanks,
                                        Jon

                                        Sullivan Numismatics
                                        Specializing in Errors & Varieties
                                        PCGS & NGC Authorized Dealer
                                        (931)-797-4888
                                        P.O Box 1283
                                        Lawrence, KS 66044






                                        On Jul 17, 2014, at 9:18 AM, fred@... [errorcoininformationexchange] <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                        Good Morning -


                                        I'll be updating as I can, but I wanted to 
                                        add something that was not in my announcement
                                        yesterday:

                                        Jon Sullivan has been instrumental  in suspecting
                                        and analyzing, and identifying  these coins as counterfeits.

                                        Jon and I had conversations about our suspicions,
                                        he after examining a group of raw, and some slabbed
                                        pieces that he was able to look at.  The Uniface
                                        strikes on so many of the D/S and Off Metal pieces
                                        perked up my thoughts at  the same time.

                                        Jon was able to take great close up scans of the
                                        identification points from the counterfeit dies, and
                                        make in-hand comparisons.

                                        A lot happened after that, but I want to state that
                                        the entire hobby, and especially our error segment,
                                        owes Jon a big hand for his intellect, insight, and
                                        help. 

                                        More info on what lead up to all of this, and what
                                        occurred after Jon and I, and others, all met and
                                        saw a large group that we analyzed together, later.


                                        Fred


                                      • Robert Risi
                                        To my understanding he might be out of the country I could be wrong but I was told what as I heard from him that he will be back in Florida in about six days.
                                        Message 19 of 20 , Jul 18 7:53 AM
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                                          To my understanding he might be out of the country I could be wrong but I was told what as I heard from him that he will be back in Florida in about six days.  He travels to Europe occasionally England and possibly Bulgaria where he is from I believe he is Bulgarian

                                          Sent from my iPhone

                                          On Jul 18, 2014, at 10:43 AM, "Sullivan Numismatics jon@... [errorcoininformationexchange]" <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                           


                                          Thanks Fred & All.


                                          Although I found the first actual counterfeits, it’s certainly been a group effort to bring all this to the attention of the grading services and also to prove that the rest of the coins where fakes as well, and to just figure out what all this guy has been up to. Fred, Andy Lustig, James Essence, Mike Chambers, and myself all helped figure out this situation initially, and others have also contributed. It’s going to be an ongoing effort to put this guy out of business.

                                          Thanks,
                                          Jon

                                          Sullivan Numismatics
                                          Specializing in Errors & Varieties
                                          PCGS & NGC Authorized Dealer
                                          (931)-797-4888
                                          P.O Box 1283
                                          Lawrence, KS 66044






                                          On Jul 17, 2014, at 9:18 AM, fred@... [errorcoininformationexchange] <errorcoininformationexchange@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                          Good Morning -


                                          I'll be updating as I can, but I wanted to 
                                          add something that was not in my announcement
                                          yesterday:

                                          Jon Sullivan has been instrumental  in suspecting
                                          and analyzing, and identifying  these coins as counterfeits.

                                          Jon and I had conversations about our suspicions,
                                          he after examining a group of raw, and some slabbed
                                          pieces that he was able to look at.  The Uniface
                                          strikes on so many of the D/S and Off Metal pieces
                                          perked up my thoughts at  the same time.

                                          Jon was able to take great close up scans of the
                                          identification points from the counterfeit dies, and
                                          make in-hand comparisons.

                                          A lot happened after that, but I want to state that
                                          the entire hobby, and especially our error segment,
                                          owes Jon a big hand for his intellect, insight, and
                                          help. 

                                          More info on what lead up to all of this, and what
                                          occurred after Jon and I, and others, all met and
                                          saw a large group that we analyzed together, later.


                                          Fred


                                        • stevenamills
                                          Unfortunately, I find ebay s inaction totally expected. They got their fee, so all is well as far as they are concerned. Their response to criticism of the
                                          Message 20 of 20 , Jul 18 8:18 AM
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                                            Unfortunately, I find ebay's inaction totally expected. They got their fee, so all is well as far as they are concerned. Their response to criticism of the revised Enhanced Member Reporting is laughable.

                                            For those that are interested here's the Coin World Article:

                                            http://www.coinworld.com/insights/ebay-changes-for-counterfeit-coin-reporting-rankles-collectors.html
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