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What to do with a counterfeit Les Paul?

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OK, let me try this here...

 

Earlier this week the shop I work at bought, what we thought was, a Gibson Les Paul Supreme. This morning we were informed that it was a Chinese counterfeit and that was subsequently confirmed by Gibson.

 

Since it would appear that it's illegal to sell such things the question we now have is what can and what should we do with it and about it? I assume that we can't sell it but can we give it away? Should we report the person who sold it to us to the police or the FBI?

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Short answer is, I have no idea.

 

Longer answer is, you could to talk to an attorney, but that will just cost you more money. I doubt that your local police or FBI would give this much investigative attention, but you never know. However, they may be able to advise you on what you can/should do with it.

 

I don't know how much your shop paid for it but, it may be best to just chalk it up to experience and verify authenticity prior to the transaction in the future.

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OK, let me try this here...

 

Earlier this week the shop I work at bought, what we thought was, a Gibson Les Paul Supreme. This morning we were informed that it was a Chinese counterfeit and that was subsequently confirmed by Gibson.

 

Since it would appear that it's illegal to sell such things the question we now have is what can and what should we do with it and about it? I assume that we can't sell it but can we give it away? Should we report the person who sold it to us to the police or the FBI?

 

 

Tough call.......the "right thing to do" in my opinion would be to either destroy it, or at least disfigure it enough so it can't continue to be passed off as a real thing. perhaps a set of stamps across the serial number saying "FAKE" or something......after that, give it to a kid starting out..........

 

just my opinion.....either way, it sucks that you guys got taken by those creeps.

 

NHTom

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Karloff and Black Dog; I like the way you guys think...

 

For what it's worth, we paid $500 for it and a Behringer Ultrabass amp (worth about $115)...

 

The one thing this experience has taught us is if anyone else ever comes in with a suspicious looking Gibson (and this one looked way too good to be true since the serial number made it 13 years old) we'll shoot some pix and email them off to Gibson. They responded within ten minutes!

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Mail it to Gibson, let them worry about it. Have copious amounts of intense training for the employees. Learn not to do that again. An LP Supreme is a pretty big trade, I'd say the ball was at the very least fumbled right there.

 

rct

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OK, let me try this here...

 

Earlier this week the shop I work at bought, what we thought was, a Gibson Les Paul Supreme. This morning we were informed that it was a Chinese counterfeit and that was subsequently confirmed by Gibson.

 

Since it would appear that it's illegal to sell such things the question we now have is what can and what should we do with it and about it? I assume that we can't sell it but can we give it away? Should we report the person who sold it to us to the police or the FBI?

Yeah as mentioned.. Just report the seller to Gibson, they will deal with it (or not) and its up them really isn't it... Its ok I think to own a fake if you thought you were buying something real OR its being sold as a copy.. But obviously you cant sell it as a Gibson now you know.. Even Slash had a fake Gibson at the start :) (which Gibson now make official copies of [rolleyes] )..

Edited by Rabs

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Actually, I asked Gibson what course of further action they would recommend and they suggested contacting the person we bought it from to request a refund and that he may not have known it was counterfeit when he bought it. I'm certain he would claim the latter and refuse the former...

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Karloff and Black Dog; I like the way you guys think...

 

For what it's worth, we paid $500 for it and a Behringer Ultrabass amp (worth about $115)...

 

The one thing this experience has taught us is if anyone else ever comes in with a suspicious looking Gibson (and this one looked way too good to be true since the serial number made it 13 years old) we'll shoot some pix and email them off to Gibson. They responded within ten minutes!

 

 

you guys got off easy, it was most likely bought new for around 300/400 bucks.

 

no idea what the legal ramifications are. I think if you sell it, with full disclosure on what it is, and how it came in to your hands, someone would probably buy it, set it up as good as they could, and play it. Why not?? the issue isn't that it's a copy (fake), it's a reality these exist, the problem is someone trying to hawk it for $4,000 instead of 400 and misrepresenting it as a USA Gibson. just sell it for it is worth,, which could mean the store would loose a few bucks,, but it's out of your hands..

 

 

In doubt about where to go next? I'd call Gibson Customer Support explain the sitch, and see if any one can help. They may say "destroy it" and you take the loss. If Gibson really cared, I think they'd have tried to stop this a long time ago.

Edited by kidblast
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Karloff and Black Dog; I like the way you guys think...

 

For what it's worth, we paid $500 for it and a Behringer Ultrabass amp (worth about $115)...

 

The one thing this experience has taught us is if anyone else ever comes in with a suspicious looking Gibson (and this one looked way too good to be true since the serial number made it 13 years old) we'll shoot some pix and email them off to Gibson. They responded within ten minutes!

 

So you gave 500 for what you thought was actually a Les Paul Supreme? Nice!

 

rct

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Yep. The fault is as much with your shop. If it's too good to be true...

 

If it's worth $300, sell it as a fake, and you're only out $85 bucks. Write it off to experience.

 

Fake art is bought and sold all the time, and the buyer really has no recourse. Doesn't make it right, but the buyer must be responsible for knowing the value of what he's buying. An item is only worth what it will fetch.

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Don't know if this would be legal or not, but I would get rid of anything that says Gibson, even if you have to chisel out the head-stock logo, scratch out the serial number, and sell it as a Les Paul copy for what you paid for it.

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Don't know if this would be legal or not, but I would get rid of anything that says Gibson, even if you have to chisel out the head-stock logo, scratch out the serial number, and sell it as a Les Paul copy for what you paid for it.

 

I agree. Just take the name off and sell it as a copy. You won't get much but it's better than nothing. Also, don't assume the seller knew...I live in an area where a big store was busted for selling Chibsons about 10 years ago.....owner went to jail for some time....so there are many people around here that own fake Gibsons and have no idea. I came across two of these over the years and let the owners know....they truly didn't know. This is the story, I actually never saw this one before.

https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/fake-gibsons-seized-seller-arrested-1

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Karloff and Black Dog; I like the way you guys think...

 

For what it's worth, we paid $500 for it and a Behringer Ultrabass amp (worth about $115)...

 

The one thing this experience has taught us is if anyone else ever comes in with a suspicious looking Gibson (and this one looked way too good to be true since the serial number made it 13 years old) we'll shoot some pix and email them off to Gibson. They responded within ten minutes!

 

the shop deserves the loss. no way they thought they were getting a legit guitar. someone offers a popular, easy to sell item at a fraction of it's cost, and no one suspected it might be stolen? no one said "hey this guy might be a crackhead who stole this, lets check the serial number first." or hey, this guitar is worth a hell of alot more than what he's asking, maybe we should let the guy know/ask more questions etc. best thing to go with that guitar is hang it over the boss' door so he doesn't forget that greed can come back and bite you.

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Haven't seen one posted in the forum for a couple of years! It must be considered to be 'Vintage' by now...

 

Was / is it, by ny chance, inscribed 'Suprome' on the headstock? That was usually the dead-giveaway on the Chinese Supremes.

 

$290 bought one new the last time I saw the links posted here.

AFAIK if your shop sells it with 'Gibson' on the headstock - even with full disclosure - you are committing a crime ('felony' in USA-speak?).

 

Pip.

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Tough call.......the "right thing to do" in my opinion would be to either destroy it, or at least disfigure it enough so it can't continue to be passed off as a real thing. perhaps a set of stamps across the serial number saying "FAKE" or something......after that, give it to a kid starting out..........

 

just my opinion.....either way, it sucks that you guys got taken by those creeps.

 

NHTom

 

I agree, I'd carve Fake across the logo deeply and the serial numbers then give it to a kid.

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Yep. The fault is as much with your shop. If it's too good to be true...

I am not buying this story ... Whoever purchased the guitar for the store paid the the fair-market price for Chibson LP Supreme (legal or not) -- there is no way that deal gets made with him thinking it is a real one at that price. Then they (the store) start thinking about it and realize that they can get in trouble themselves if they re-sell it ... The owner should just give it to the employee of the month, and get it out of the store as soon as possible.

Edited by 01GT eibach

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To the original poster, did you suspect it was a fake when you offered 500 bucks for the guitar to begin with?

Edited by bigtim

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What to do with a counterfeit Les Paul...play it and don't get fooled again.

 

Sorry this happened. I am seeing a lot of counterfeit Fender guitars. By counterfeit, I mean it appears that a generic water slide decal has been placed on the front and there is no serial number to be found anywhere on the guitar. The Fender logo is "brownish" and does not look correct. Also, they are asking close to retail prices. Anyway to make a quick buck.

 

However, this is a business opportunity. We can start a service that "grades" and identifies "certified Les Paul and other guitars. Similar to what they do with trading cards, coins, and paper money...GAC - Guitar Authentication Consortium.

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... there is no way that deal gets made with him thinking it is a real one at that price.

 

But, isn't that the point of the thread. I thought the complaint was that the buyer bought the LP thinking he was getting a deal on a real Gibson.

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... I thought the complaint was that the buyer bought the LP thinking he was getting a deal on a real Gibson.

If this was a pawnshop, then maybe ... But a music store?? That is like a jewelry store buying a nice used Rolex Submariner for $25 ... wow, this is a great price! It just seems to be too much of a coincidence (in my humble opinion) that the price of the Chibson was right in line with what the street value of the guitar ... which was nowhere near the vicinity of even a "real good deal" on a LP Supreme. In my book, it just does not happen that way unless you think it is a fake or stolen. This is not even a Les Paul Standard. We are talking about a Supreme for God's sake...

 

As a side note, I am usually not the one to poo-poo someone else's post (I am really not). But this thread really raised the "Whaaaat???" in me. So, I sincerely apologize for being the nay-sayer. You have let me me have my say, and I appreciate that. Thank you...

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