Author Topic: Caveat Emptor-Buyer Beware! A Moral tale  (Read 449 times)


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Caveat Emptor-Buyer Beware! A Moral tale
« on: April 01, 2018, 12:18:46 PM »
I have just been to pick up a Nightingale Badge that I had traded with a dealer at a nearby Antiques fair.This had been purchases as one of two sold last year on Ebay.I had listed these on my site as usual but was contacted from a constable on the Isle of Man. The person who was named as the recipient had recently returned from a reunion in London and when asked by her colleague why she wasn't wearing her badge,replied that she hadn't been able to find it.Her colleague then responded that that was probably because it was listed on my site!! She accordingly then reported it a having been stolen by an opportunistic thief during one of her open house events at her residence(Nothing else was taken).This was several months after I had bought it however.  I had therefore been in possession of stolen property(albeit unknowingly).the dealer I had traded it with had not yet sold it to the customer that he had promised it to so I got it back from him today.I am now in receipt of stolen property which must be returned to the owner at a considerable loss to me.The dealer who I bought it from on ebay sold it in good faith believing it to have been in his late fathers collection for several years and I am unable to state definitely that this particular badge is the one that I bought.Ebay aren't interested as it was so long ago.
The moral of the story for other collectors and occasional dealers is that we should perhaps be more cautious as to the provenance of an item before we buy as I'm sure this could be repeated many times over and even if we acquire things in good faith we may still be liable to forfeiture.


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Re: Caveat Emptor-Buyer Beware! A Moral tale
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2018, 04:05:39 PM »
Oh dear, a sorry tale indeed.  Thanks for the heads up.  One of the reasons Im not keen on displaying the reverse of badges is for that reason, Id hate to think any of mine were stolen, having to return them to their rightful owners at a loss to me.


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Re: Caveat Emptor-Buyer Beware! A Moral tale
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2018, 09:07:58 PM »

It is a consideration Myk, Certainly.  But then many vendors, on ebay at least, do display the reverse sides, and this is certainly the case with Peter's site and, as another example, Sally Bosley.

There is of course, perhaps another problem.  Anyone, genuine or not, could lodge a claim, now with full details, from a genuine seller...  I suppose that it is possible that one could also end up with a badge previously sold and being reclaimed as stolen/lost.  I am not by any means an expert on such matters and think that most of us would not want to become embroiled... the door to scammers/fraudsters is also open.  I suppose that insisting that all sellers should prove legal provenance could be an answer (that I feel any good lawyer could probably get around) but in the end it is a case of 'Caveat Emptor'...  A can of worms...

One of the reasons I have been such a foot-dragger in creating a special section for lost/stolen items on SoN...

But then I would like to feel open about my own items as I am sure many others would - and I have certainly never lost out when returning an item legally acquired/held when returning such to a family member. In the last case it was a long lost treasured heirloom - I returned the badge gratis.  The family member not only bought me a replacement but also arrange tea at Clariges in London, quite without request or expectation of reward. I ended up missing the (obviously very expensive) tea party but received an equally expensive PCANSER badge and a real kick out of being able to return the original.

Perhaps we need a bit of legal advice re 'Caveat Emptor'. Any collector is apprarently wide open. Anyone know where to get free legal advice?

Ps.That badge is already on SoN if anyone is interested.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2018, 09:14:55 PM by wilfb »