Officials say gold buyer may not have been dealing fair | News
Albany County officials hit a local gold buying business with a big fine Friday night, saying customers may not have been getting a fair deal.
County inspectors conducted an undercover sting at a shop and seized the scales commonly used to weigh the gold.
The signs outside Capital Ca$H for Gold promise great prices to take unwanted jewelry off your hands, but Albany County officials say the owner wasn't dealing fair and square, by using illegal scales to weigh gold and precious metals.
“There's a lot of people that could get defrauded a lot of money people are taking heirlooms and they're turning them in for cash and people are getting robbed, basically,” said Craig Apple.
After an undercover investigation, agents seized these scales from the store, which they say didn't have the required inspection seal and they say the scales weren't accurate, undervaluing gold by half an ounce.
“Even though he's robbing them $40, $50, that's money in their pocket. So under the AG and marketing law the most we can fine this gentleman is $70,000 and we're going to go for the full amount,” said Albany County Executive Dan McCoy.
“I'm not trying to rip anyone off,” said David Brown, store owner.
When Brown showed up for work, he told NewsChannel 13 he's done nothing wrong, saying he didn't need certified scales in the first place, because he doesn't judge the price of gold just by weight.
“I made them an offer. Not once did I mention the weight, not once did I mention how much I'm paying per penny weight because that's not how I buy,” said Brown.
But the president of the Albany County Dealers Association says all their gold buyers measure the weight with a certified scale.
“I'm very disheartened that anyone would be operating their business that way or be accused of operating their business that way. It gives legitimate businesses a bad name,” said Jason Pierce, President of the Albany County Dealers Association.
It's not Brown's first brush with the law. Last September he was charged with chasing a customer with a loaded shotgun who Brown suspected was cheated him. Brown pled guilty to disorderly conduct.
Brown was not charged with a crime this time, but instead on a civil complaint.
County officials said they don't have evidence yet that any customers were ripped off, but advise anyone selling their precious metals to make sure to check for a county inspection sticker on the scale.