Consumerwatch: Buying gold from pawn shops
Published Monday, January 21, 2013 2:37PM CST
Buying jewelry from a pawn shop could leave you with fake goods. That's what happened when a Winnipeg man ended up with a gold bracelet he later found out wasn't real.
Brian Byrd purchased a bracelet at Economy Pawn Shop in November. He claimed the owner told him it was 10-carat gold worth $450.
However, a few weeks later, he found it it was fake.
"I felt like a fool. I felt stupid you know," said Byrd.
Byrd went back to the pawn shop to return it, but claimed the owner wouldn't take it back.
"[The owner took] a magnet to it and said 'Oh, it's gold.’ Then when it hits the clasp the magnet grabs it, and then he said, 'Oh, it's not gold,’ Then walked away from me and won't talk to me again,” said Byrd.
But Economy Pawn Shop owner Leon Dimerman had a different take on the story He claimed would have returned the money, but said Byrd didn't have the receipt.
"He told me not gold," he said. "I said give me the receipt, I'll give you the money back."
Some pawn shops can test for gold content right on the spot, but they can also be fooled by pieces that are gold-plated, said Michael DeSousa at A&C Pawn Ltd.
DeSousa cautions consumers that even if an item says it's 10-carat gold, it still might be fake.
"Of course everybody come here with 'Well it says 10-carat on it, but a stamp can be manufactured by anyone," he said.
DeSousa advises people to check what a shop's return policy is before buying gold and to get it appraised.
In the end, Brian Byrd ended taking Leon Dimerman to court for the amount owned to him and won his case.
After CTV spoke to Dimerman, Byrd returned to the shop with his bracelet and receipt and was awarded a full refund.