Be wary of these Northumberland shillings that frequent ebay. There are probably more fakes of this coin than any other British coin. Another coin that has been doing the rounds is an 1864 Florin with die number 64. As a member of a great British coin forum we noticed that one prominent seller with over a 15000 FB on ebay from the UK had sold more than 12 of these coins all in the same aEF grade and all with die number 64.
The same seller also had a rather large number of Gothic crowns in various grades and to say there was only an 8000 mintage it was rather to unhealthy. I noticed he was selling 3 of these in the same week, myself and some of the forum members decided to to some leg work on this seller and found that he'd sold about 12 Florins with die 64 all in the same grades, but most notably they had the tell tale same markings on the OBV field.
We now supsect (after confronting the seller) that he's been buying up Chinese (or from wherever) fakes and drip feeding them into ebay, unfortunately he was drip feeding a little to quickly, because from August to end of October 2012, he'd sold 12 and for one seller to have the same coin in the same grade with same tell tale OBV marks and same die number is definately suspect. Any dealer who had that amount would and should be suspicious of the amount passing through his hands unless he KNEW exactly where they were coming from. One member from the British coin forum is now going to the Ebay fraud department with our findings.
I personally don't think ebay will do much about it, as we al know that sellers who are condstantly selling on ebay for 1000s a week bring in the cash to Ebay, so we'll have to sit back and see what happens.
Another problematic prominent ebay seller who mainly sells gold coins was caught shill bidding his own auctions. I'd been watching this seller for quite some time as he had some nice coins avaliable. About a year back his alter ego had bought a Gold coin from me so i knew who it was exactly shilling. This seller at the time of finding out about his activities had about 20 auctions listed, the shiller was winning 17 of those auctions. I took a dip sample of just 5 of those auctions and the shiller had bidded up to 5,500 GBP, so you could imagine the amount if i took into consideration the other 12 the shiller was winning. I listed the 17 auctions onto the British coin forum and explained my findings and within 2 hours the seller had took off all his auctions. Make of that what you will..........
classic british coins Fakes and Shill bidders
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26 December 2012
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