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Canada/Other : RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

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Patches
Liz
01 Apr 2011
03:43:35am

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Interesting article!

The RCMP and Canada Post believe they have licked a network that pumped thousands of phoney postage stamps into the Toronto and Montreal regions.

Two people were arrested in Montreal Tuesday after police searched two dozen businesses in that city. Those arrests are linked to three previous arrests in Montreal and Toronto that have led to the seizure of more than 40,000 phoney stamps and about 10,000 authentic stamps that were set for reuse.



Read more............

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/rcmp-canada-post-stamp-2-6-million-counterfeit-20110329-125024-851.html

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/RCMP+stamp+counterfeit+postage+operation/4524224/story.html?cid=dlvr.it-twitter-ej_news


Liz
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Cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
01 Apr 2011
07:40:16pm
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

Interesting Liz.
" ... He said the investigation also led to another arrest in October, when police busted a Montreal man who had been recycling used stamps and selling them online.

" .... "There were authentic stamps that were removed from envelopes (and) washed," said Bessette, adding that officers seized 10,000 reused stamps in that raid.

" .... te said the man's operation did not appear to be linked to the counterfeiting ring, so he was charged with selling stamps for the purpose of payment of postage without Canada Post's consent.

" The RCMP believes the seized stamps all came from the same source, which Bessette added has not yet been identified. ..."


Was it in this forum a few months ago that someone maintained that there was no law in Canada prohibiting reuse of skips ?

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Patches
Liz
01 Apr 2011
10:42:56pm

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re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

Yes I believe there was a comment made a while ago by someone expressing this.

Liz

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Bobstamp
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01 Apr 2011
11:01:50pm
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

Yup, that was me.

A friend of mine, who is far more knowledgeable than me about stamps and has worked full-time in the philatelic industry for the last 35 years, insists that there is no Canadian law prohibiting the re-use of uncancelled stamps. Canadian postal regulations, he says, do not have the force of law and would never stand up in court.

It looks like my friend's views may be mistaken. But then no one has been convicted of anything at this point, and may not be.

Bob

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www.ephemeraltreasures.net
Patches
Liz
01 Apr 2011
11:28:10pm

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re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

It will be interesting to follow up on these charges to see the outcome.

There certainly are enough people selling uncancelled, ungummed stamps on eBay and if they are advertising them as USED I'm of the personal opinion that they are not falsely advertising these as no where in their listings do they suggest they are for use as postage.

I did see one listing somewhere a while ago where the seller did state that the stamps he was selling were not to be used for postage as they were used, ungummed, uncancelled issues.

The case of counterfeit stamps is a totally different basket of apples.

Perhaps the postal authorities should be a little more diligent in ensuring that all mail goes through a cancelling machine before sorting and that doesn't mean giving all workers a black marker or a ball point pen to scribble on the stamps!

I would say 90% of all mail I receive from Canadian addresses does NOT have the stamps cancelled and I have had numerous complaints about some of my mailings arriving in the USA without the stamps being cancelled.

Liz

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Rwilliams1946
02 Apr 2011
02:36:43am
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

There is a difference between unused stamps NG and WASHED stamps.

Roger

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Patches
Liz
02 Apr 2011
04:03:11am

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re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

What in your opinion is the difference?

I know there were stamps in some countries that were issued without gum, but with modern stamps issued in Canada, how did the gum get off the stamps if they weren't 'washed'?

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Rwilliams1946
02 Apr 2011
04:42:20am
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

Stamps that are 'washed' have their cancellations removed. Unused stamps could be soaked off other stamps (humidity problem) or off unmailed envelopes. In the US (as well as other countries) I imagine the problem has been 'solved' by the unsoakable stamps of recent vintage.

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Cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
02 Apr 2011
11:44:39am
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

I suggest that "Unsoakable" is is more of an indication of difficulty than an absolute.
There are a few that I have not solved yet but with care and patience many of these "Unsoakabes" can be teased off the paper of the envelope.
Of course, the person wanting a large number of skips to reuse as postage probably will never bother as he, or she, is looking for something easy and teasing uncancelled stamps off the paper is much too much like work.
I am currently working on a large kiloware bunch of recent used British issues, mostly Machins, many with the aggravating security cuts and while the success rate is quite low, I am only playing with copies that will be tossed anyway to practice on. Once I master the technique I will "soak" nice examples of these unsoakables for my collection.

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amsd
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Editor, Seal News; contributor, JuicyHeads
02 Apr 2011
12:24:17pm
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

getting back to "washed stamps," I looked for published examples of that phrase, and all that I found after 6 searches point to the meaning I've always associated with the term: stamps that saw postal duty and have been removed from their covers and sold for re-use. I found instances dating back to a NY Times report from 1872 through a Federal Reporter notice in 1982. the most recent was from Prison Talk in 2004, and the most explicit was from Kiplingers: http://books.google.com/books?id=pQQEAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA92&lpg=PA92&dq=%22washed+stamps%22&source=bl&ots=_m2H8IR2-8&sig=nJNPueaJq2LH8Ne_n_JopRQR2Is&hl=en&ei=9UyXTa_IDsnA0QGFlZD6Cw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=8&ved=0CEUQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=%22washed%20stamps%22&f=false.

I think the meaning is clear and precise: illegal reuse of postally used stamps. This excludes those stamps that are being unstuck from one another because of water damage or humidity.

David

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Joshtanski
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02 Apr 2011
07:05:19pm
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

I've seen plenty of examples in kiloware that were illegally reused by simply cutting around the stamp and gluing/taping the stamp and envelope paper to the new envelope. It makes me wonder if anyone but a stamp collector would bother actually soaking in water before illegally reusing? I know for the time it takes me to soak stamps, it wouldn't be worth the time for the "free" postage.

Also, has anyone actually found a postally used recent counterfeit? I have two covers, but from Nigeria so probably way more common than Canada or USA.

Josh

(Message edited by joshtanski on April 02, 2011)

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Patches
Liz
02 Apr 2011
08:06:27pm

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re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

I haven't seen the counterfeit stamps Josh, but I haven't really been looking for them either.

From my understanding the latest counterfeit stamps feature images of the Queen, Canadian lighthouses and stamps with themes from the Vancouver Olympics and apparently sold in singles and in booklets of 10.

Liz

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Cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
04 Apr 2011
09:39:56pm
re: RCMP, Canada Post stamp out $2.6-million counterfeit postage ring & recycling used stamps

I have had some experience soaking British stamps from the corners of the envelopes and often work on kiloware lots looking for some elusive variation of one of the long and very intriguing Machin series.
Special stamps are soaked (washed if yiou prefer) either singly or in small groups.
However, often that leaves hundreds of examples of the more common stamps still with the paper attached, or attached to the paper.
The absolute volume can be reduced to probably a third and the weight to a fifth if all the reasonably decent stamps are removed from the paper so I do that and then store them in larger envelopes, just in case at some point I realise that there is a newly discovred variety that may have slipped through my fingers.
It takes several hours to perform that cleaning peocess on four or five hundred stamps. And currently the UK postal system is very careless about properly cancelling the NVI stamps which if unused have an average value of fifty cents each. Easily 20-25% of the used stamps in a large kiloware lot could be salvaged as skips.
So, an individual who wished to sell them on eBay could sit at home at night and, assuming that they yield 50% of the original face value, earn somewhere around eight or ten dollars for each hours work.
Pobably a lot more than would be brought home from a job at the local McDoanalds slaving over a hot stove or dealing with the crazies who get hungry late at night.
All they need to do that is no sense of honesty and a some spare time.

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