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jonoslack

ebay - a cautionary tale

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Hi There

I bought a 35mm 'cron on ebay from a dealer with a rating of over 5000, and 99.99% satisfaction. (it was £700). I spoke to them on the phone - charming and helpful - we even discussed the fact that there was no box, but that based on who they had bought it from it couldn't possibly be stolen.

I sent it to Leica for coding.

It was stolen - the police rang this evening, Leica have sent the lens back to the rightful owner, I'm in their doghouse, I could (but won't) be prosecuted, and I have absolutely NO RIGHT to any money back.

Damn!

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Sorry to hear about your case.

 

But we as buyers have absolutely no idea of the history of the lens.

 

Unless of course Leica and put up serials of lenses that were reported stolen. And possibly other history as well.

 

It is not easy to do anyway coz that would means that the person reporting needs to prove that he/she bought that particular lens.

 

Gosh. Complicated stuff here!

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Jono,

 

First sympathy.

 

Second -- this isn't right if Leica doesn't maintain a list on the website of stolen serial numbers!

 

In the US we would be able to show a loss on our income tax as a result of this. Dunno what you are able to do. Still no fun,t ho.

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That is sad and you have my sympathy. The seller should have more to fear as far as being in anyone's dog house.

 

OTOH I'm guessing the real owner is a happy camper. We all want that phone call saying "we've found your stuff". Having things stolen - even if it is only 'stuff' is not fun.

 

I wish Leica could publish their DB over stolen stuff like they had on the old site.

 

- Carl

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Seems to me that the IRS give money away for anything over there!

 

Sympathy with your loss, Jonathan. Can your credit card company help with insurance?

 

Did the vendor know it was stolen? If so, their 99.9% needs to be dropped own a notch or 99...

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... I could (but won't) be prosecuted ...

 

I don't understand why you can be prosecuted based on the details of the purchase. Why is the ebay seller not liable of production instead?

 

BTW, who is the seller? We would all benefit by being careful of sellers like this.

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Jono,

 

Sorry to hear about this, and it's too bad the authorities can't hold the dealer's feet to the fire.

 

Andy, you can even deduct gambling losses from your income taxes here. ;-)

 

Larry

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Jono would be liable to prosecution if he had knowingly bought a stolen item - and quite right too! The police have decided that that is not the case here, hence no charge.

 

Before everyone starts vilifying the dealer bear in mind that he too may have bought the lens in good faith just as Jono has. In fact given his feedback rating I say this is probably the case - unless of course his account has been hijacked.

 

Jono, have you been in contact with the seller to try and arrange a refund?

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Jono would be liable to prosecution if he had knowingly bought a stolen item - and quite right too! The police have decided that that is not the case here, hence no charge.

 

Before everyone starts vilifying the dealer bear in mind that he too may have bought the lens in good faith just as Jono has. In fact given his feedback rating I say this is probably the case - unless of course his account has been hijacked.

 

Jono, have you been in contact with the seller to try and arrange a refund?

 

Hi Steve - thanks for the sympathy - I actually rang the dealer and asked them why there was no box - was it stolen, before I bid? He told me that he had bought it from someone he trusted, and these things came from lost property etc. etc.

 

I haven't spoken to him yet, as the police asked me to hold fire until they had spoken. Of course, he might choose to give me my money back . . . . . . . . but he doesn't have to if he bought it in good faith (apparently).

 

I wont' give his name now, as I'm pretty sure he bought it in good faith. Maybe he'll come up trumps and give me my money back . . . . . maybe!

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You should pursue this with the seller and eBay, if in fact they were innocent they should at least offer you a refund or to split the difference so to keep their good standing within the eBay community.

 

I'm assuming they are selling a large range of photographic equipment, and they surely must be aware of the legal ramifications of selling stolen property. Honestly describing your case in the transaction feedback would cost them a lot more than making a compromise with you.

 

- David

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That is sad and you have my sympathy. The seller should have more to fear as far as being in anyone's dog house.

 

OTOH I'm guessing the real owner is a happy camper. We all want that phone call saying "we've found your stuff". Having things stolen - even if it is only 'stuff' is not fun.

 

I wish Leica could publish their DB over stolen stuff like they had on the old site.

 

- Carl

Hi Carl

I quite agree - happy for the owner . . . .. except that I bought the lens without a lens hood, paid £64 for one, and that's gone back to the owner too

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Jono, I hope everything works out for you. The only consolation that you have (actually it's no consolation at all) is that you'd have been in the same situation if you'd bought from a high street dealer.

 

Good luck with getting your money back.

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Jono--

 

First, my condolences. What a horrilbe experience!

 

I hope you've had a conversation with eBay on this. The seller should be aware they were passing on stolen goods on eBay.

 

This should be more than a "buyer beware" issue. Especially for eBay sellers, they need to ensure they actually own the goods, since they're often working across borders.

 

So I'd definitely talk with eBay if you haven't already. Practices like this could hurt their model a lot.

 

(I also always pay with PayPal, which is owned by eBay, so if there's any dispute there's at least the promise of insurance to something like $2000 US. Of course, I don't know if they would do anything in this case, and the amount doesn't help if you're buying a Noctilux, but it's something).

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Jono, I hope everything works out for you. The only consolation that you have (actually it's no consolation at all) is that you'd have been in the same situation if you'd bought from a high street dealer.

 

Good luck with getting your money back.

 

Thanks Steve - actually, they ARE a high street dealer as well as being an ebay trader - with verified retailer status from their local county council.

 

It's hard to see how one can get it right when buying second hand.

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Guest guy_mancuso

Absolutely sucks big time. Sorry it just had to be said.

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Jono--

 

First, my condolences. What a horrilbe experience!

 

I hope you've had a conversation with eBay on this. The seller should be aware they were passing on stolen goods on eBay.

 

This should be more than a "buyer beware" issue. Especially for eBay sellers, they need to ensure they actually own the goods, since they're often working across borders.

 

So I'd definitely talk with eBay if you haven't already. Practices like this could hurt their model a lot.

 

(I also always pay with PayPal, which is owned by eBay, so if there's any dispute there's at least the promise of insurance to something like $2000 US. Of course, I don't know if they would do anything in this case, and the amount doesn't help if you're buying a Noctilux, but it's something).

 

Hi Jamie

I haven't spoken to ebay yet, as i thought I'd give the dealer the chance to come up with the goods, and the police asked me to wait 24 hours.

 

I did pay with paypal, and I think it's possible that you simply get banned from ebay when you sell stolen goods?

 

So far I only know that I have NO RIGHTS - which, of course, doesn't mean I won't get anything back - a cautious approach and charm rather than belligerence seems like the way to start - of course I'll keep you posted.

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