Hi All,

I just joined your group and was wondering if anyone has information I could obtain in regards to lawsuits against American Royal Arts. I reside in Florida and purchased three pieces (signed Beatles items) in 2007. Are all pieces sold in that year forged? I paid $2,000 each and after reading about ARA & Morales, I'm now sick to my stomach. Any info would be appreciated.

 

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Comment by Rick Garceau on February 23, 2012 at 6:01pm
My reasoning was just like what Mike has described, but the bottom line is that I was purchasing items outside of my field of expertise and I was taken for a ride.. You then have to get over the feelings of stupidity and embarrassment and do something about it !
Comment by Brad on February 23, 2012 at 6:06pm

Get into the minds of people that buy that stuff? Is it somehow there fault for getting professionally scamed out of there hard earned money? Im sure when Rick and Denise made there purchases they did that with the faith when someone says its a authentic authgraph it really is a authentic autograph. Being a collector after searching for something or wanting a item for whatever reason then finally finding it then being told its legit I know how tempting it is to make the purchase. Its nobodys fault but the scam artist seller! You need to get into there minds Chris and find out what makes then tic the people who get ripped off have enough to worry about

Comment by Christopher Williams on February 23, 2012 at 6:11pm
You're exactly right, Rick. I really hope you can find a way to get your money back. Don't allow any of those people to intimidate any of you.

Chris Morales, Forensic Investigator....yeah right!!!!!
Comment by Mike B. on February 23, 2012 at 6:26pm
But that's the problem....I thought I did my "homework". I bought these in 2008. If there was negative press out there on these guys back then I couldn't find it, and believe me I looked. So here's a question for you, how can you honestly expect the average consumer to trust anyone in this business? I mean it would appear that if there are honest dealers out there that they constitute an incredibly small percentage of the industry. For every article you find praising someone there are two bashing them. Fraud apparently runs rampant in this industry. But here's something to think about; I would venture a guess that most of ARA customers weren't autograph collectors.....they were music lovers. They bought these pieces because they love the band.....the music....a song. So much in fact they were willing to shell out big bucks to own something that would be a reflection of that love. I'm a music fanatic. I have a great collection of vinyl, vintage posters, guitars etc. Signed albums? I have the three I bought from ARA and I'll never buy another. This experience devastated me....not just because of the money......but because I was so proud to own these pieces I believed were genuine. To find out they're just cheap fakes.....well I can't explain it. Up until last week I loved them.....now they're in my basement because I can't stand to look at them......how's that for honesty?

Mike
Comment by Christopher Williams on February 23, 2012 at 6:28pm
Brad, without this getting more incendiary, it's not difficult to get into the minds of those that scam. The simple fact is, the market is huge for those who want to scam people when it comes to autographs. "Operation Bullpen" happened about ten years ago and yet there are more forgeries of Mantle, Ted Williams and Joe DiMaggio today than ever before.

I'm not here to win a popularity contest, Brad. I've done over 200 YouTube videos exposing forgeries and I hammer the buyers just as hard as I do the sellers of forgeries. The majority of good guys get on me for hammering buyers, but the truth is, if the market of buyers of forgeries wasn't there, then the sellers of forgeries wouldn't be in business. The forgery business is bigger than it every was.

And yes, Brad, whether anyone wants to hear it or not, buyers are to blame, too. That's a fact. Years ago there was a seller on Ebay, who before he was booted off, sold over $750,000 in forgeries. All of the forgeries were signed guitars, signed drum heads, etc. The buyers thought that because the item came with a impressive-looking COA that the signed item had to be authentic. Think about that; over $750,000 in music forgeries from just one seller.

It's unfortunate that the buyers of that garbage don't do any research until after they have made a purchase and that's the frustrating part. I may sound cold to you, and it is unpopular, but what I write is fact.

That being said, I still wouldn't be doing this for almost 10 years if I didn't care.
Comment by Christopher Williams on February 23, 2012 at 6:31pm
Mike, I understand the emotional attachment of music-related memorabilia. The sellers of forgeries count on that and work that angle.
Comment by Rick Garceau on February 23, 2012 at 6:46pm
Christopher- thank you for what you've done to expose these forgers. Ive seen many of your videos and sometimes it seems like you're talking direcly to me! It doesn't upset me,but instead motivates me to do more.
Comment by Christopher Williams on February 23, 2012 at 6:49pm
Rick, I appreciate that. And if anyone wants to get mad at me, that's fine, but after you're done getting mad at me, then get mad at the sellers.
Comment by Brad on February 23, 2012 at 7:06pm

Great Chris keep exposeing forgeries nobodys saying not too. I could care less about being popular my friend and I wasent saying you dont care. There will always be irresponsible people who dont research what they buy and it is unfortunate your right. I was saying the buyers are connected to these items theres no secret to why they buy them they dreamed about them they love them its something they always wanted. You said you were trying to get into the minds of people who buy the stuff and being a collector for over 20 years and someone who has purchased forgeries in the past I was trying to explain that its no secret what goes through our mind.  I respect your opinion Chris this is not argumentitive its just my thoughts dont take it the wrong way

Comment by Christopher Williams on February 23, 2012 at 7:13pm
Brad, don't worry, I didn't take your comments the wrong way. Believe me, I am always saddened (and angry) when I read a story like Rick's. That's why we can never stop exposing these guys. Some people think that what we do is redundant, and it is redundant, but being redundant also reminds the sellers of forgeries that we aren't going away.

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