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Changed stone

Hi Everyone

I have recently been caught in a clever fraud/switch situation
and would appreciate input as to what you feel my next steps
should be. On Oct 9 a individual brought a custom made ring.
Centre cushion shaped Ruby measuring approx 5.6 x 5.3 x 4.3mm,
1.80cts. by gauge, decent clarity with some small angular
inclusions deep under the table and very dark colour. The ring
has a princess cut on each shoulder. On Oct 10 the ring was sold
to a local pawn broker. Later that day the pawn took the ring to
another area gemologist for re appraisal. The Ruby is now
synthetic. Rather than contacting me at that time the pawn
assumes that I was either involved or in error. December 10th
the pawn broker brings the ring to me and asks me if it is gen.
or syn. The Ruby is obviously synthetic. Each dimension varies
by 0.1 to 0.15mm from the original measurements. The stone has
numerous gas bubble inclusions and fluores. as synthetic. In
addition the stone is abraded. The problem is reputation and
credibility. The pawn broker understands that the stone is
different. But I have to admit that if the situation was
reversed the timeing certainly would lead me to be suspicious.
As you all know credibility and reputation are all and everything
in the jewellery business.

Your suggestions and input will be appreciated.

Bought one day, pawned the next… doesn’t make sense ; Where is
the buyer… what did they pay with…funny money

Hi Mike: Every once in a while we hear these stories and it is
unfortunate, I sell on ebay the auction and I am getting a little
tired of people that buy things and give you a credit card and it
is always that person who wants to return an item because they
dissapointed with something…

Sorry I got a little off your subject, but I would just say this
is not the stone I gave you and stick to your convictions and
that is your reputation , you would not do something like this
either through not knowing or maliciously, It must come to a
point where we must not be the victim for foul play, but I know
the guilt feelings you get over someone thinking that you might
have done it.

Michael, In my humble opinion you were at the wrong place at the
wrong time. This type of event is not really that uncommon and in
a situation like this totally unavoiadable. If it wasn’t you who
appraised the stone these criminals would have chosen someone
else. What do you suspect that you would have or should have
done differently. I believe nothing. The gentleman at the pawn
shop should have been better able to identify a synthetic from a
real ruby and not have relied on the paper apraisal anyway. This
is in all honesty I believe where the problem is. Not with you.
Every time someone appraises something and it leaves the front
door it is capable of being repalced. Out of your control in any

Things unfortunately happen…
Best wishes
Gemstone Brokerage Associates Ltd. Telephone (518)438-5487
P.O. Box 8930 Albany, N.Y. 12208
Agents for: Lukusuzi Gemstones Ltd. of Zambia
Lake Valley Minerals of Malawi
Truva Minning of Turkey
Fortune Gems and Jewelry Ltd. of Tanzania

Just realized my tired eyes (110 hours worked last week) read
"brought" as “bought”. Opinion remains the same.

If you wear cubic zirconia, God will know.

Minutes off I-95 in sunny central SC, USA,
where the camellias are blooming.

 Bought one day, pawned the next.. doesn't make sense <<

Sure it does. Bought with a genuine ruby, replaced the the real
ruby with a syn, showed the pawn shop the sales receipt for a
ring with a real ruby & pawned the ring with the syn ruby. Too
bad the pawn broker didn’t check 1st. It was a scam from the
start. Looks like the only way to protect yourself is to weigh &
plot every majo r stone you sell. Maybe someone can come up with
a Polaroid/light attachmen t to take micro-photographs. They’d be
as good as DNA.


Martin makes clear sense. Original word is brought…not
bought. To clarify the ring was presented to me for independant

I’m sorry but you lost me. Did you mean to say (bought) or did
he bring it in for an appraisal?

If it is that he brought it in and you appraised it. I would
check with other jewelers in the area to see if he had the stones

Michael Mathews Victoria,Texas USA


Your liability is only to the original purchasers, and any
secondary purchaser could be sued for slander if they spread
roomers about your reputation (a legal process usually not worth
the time and money to pursue.)

I was just asked by a local car dealer to check a diamond
pendant he took in trade on a car. The customer had given him an
appraisal by a local store with the pendant. The only
similarities between the description on the appraisal and the
pendant was they were both 6 prongs and yellow gold. The diamond
in the pendant was.75mm smaller, several grades darker, and I2,
not VS2. The car dealer’s first question was if I thought the
jeweler had switched diamonds. It never occurred to him that his
customer might have substituted another complete pendant.

If you wear cubic zirconia, God will know.

Minutes off I-95 in sunny central SC, USA,
where the camellias are blooming.

Now I understand…Well a picture can be worth a thousand words…
Clearly, if the appraisal was for insurance documentation, and
the next day it was sold, it looks like the the scam artist has
put you in the middle… and misused the appraisal to entice the
sale… you can put every disclaimer in the world on the appraisal
as well as linitation for purpose and function, but you can’t
protect yourself other than say, hey the ring is not as described
in the appraisal, you have no control over what happens… It
should be obvious to the pawnbroker, that if you wrote an
appraisal for insurance purposes one day and the individual uses
it as “proof” of value, all you can say to the pawn broker is
…hey don’t you know your business, couldn’t you see it didn’t
match the description… there is probbly evidence of prong
working, dismensions are different, grade setting inclusion
different… fluorescence different… what do your notes say …
PS…the pawn broker should be paying you for your time… and he
should file a criminal complaint against the individual that
pawned it, but then again, caveat emptor, and the pawnbroker was
stupid… what has to be proven is that the scam artist switched
the stones…