But when a seller continously has brand-items for sale at below market price, it's time to be a little cautious. It can be perfectly legal - a seller might have purchased a large quantity at a good price and might use a good deal to gain attention for a new shop or something else.
A recent case, which I picked up from Magnus Angus' Facebook-profile, shows that the above is not always the case. This is a rather spectacular deal, I think. An EBay seller, Ian Bailey, has been sentenced for turning over 156,000 pounds worth of fake flylines, and over 5,000 flylines were seized by authorities at his home address. Fake flylines were sold as RIO, Hardy, Greys, Snowbee and Loop. These are all well renowned, respected and innovative brands, which of course is the reason for the forgery.
The whole case was brought forward and to the attention of the authorities by Chris Hartley of Guide Flyfishing, who carries RIO in the UK.
The lines were produced at the Northern Sport Fishing factory (which is the old Shakespeare plant), and the company and its director/owner Richard Tramer were also sentenced. The company received a 1000 pound fine (what's that about, anyway?) and mr. Tramer received a 7 month imprisonment and 18 months suspended. The seller, Ian Bailey, an 8 month imprisonment sentence. (Source).
I don't know how many brands Northern Sport Fishing is producing for at the moment, and it'll be interesting to follow the company in the future. I wouldn't be surprised if they are going to have a hard time staying in business. Good job on Guide Flyfishing's part bringing this case forward and closing down this fraud. A 156,000 pound turnover is a lot of flylines. Thankfully, I never bought from any of the eBay accounts that were selling these lines, but if someone unknowingly did, I like to know the price levels. At 30 pounds each (that would be cheap for a RIO line, for instance) it would amount to 5,500 sold flylines. That's a lot of lost business for RIO, Loop, Hardy, Snowbee and Greys. And in term, lost business and profit for the "real" brands, profit they can't use to develop new tapers and the next generation coatings...
So look out for those consistent, "good" deals.
Sorry - this is the second December page from me with bad new :-). I promise something more light hearted next Saturday.
Have a great weekend,
(PoD is a screen dump from the North Yorkshire County Council's webpage linked above).