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  1. #1
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    Bangkok Jewelry scam - again

    I have become one more statistic in the scam of tourists by the "Golden Argosy Factory Export." I won't repeat it all here because I find it well described on the web. Suffice it to say that I was fooled by meeting several different, seemingly independent people over several hours. Each person fell into a conversation and eventually added a small piece to the story of why the "government export exhibit" was so special. In the end this ended in tuk-tuk ride to Golden Argosy Factory Export where I bought a large sapphire ring.

    I have returned home and have had the ring appraised. It is real, but I overpaid by 50% over what I paid for comparable jewelry at a very reputable shop. Reputable jewelry will appraise at at least 2X the "wholesale" price paid in Bangkok. This is the retail replacement cost.

    So -- I am now trying to initiate returning the item and get my money back. I am looking for ideas and suggestions.

    I am trying to call the Tourist Assistance Center; it's hard to get through and time zones need to be considered. I do not expect a lot of help here, but will press for help.

    I am trying to find a business associate who is traveling to Bangkok, so that I can have the item hand carried back to the store. Is going to the store for a return safe? Will the police go along?

    Is it useful to contact the American Embassy?

    Will MasterCard get involved if there is known fraud? So far one person at my bank's MasterCard number has said verbally that they will not assist, since I approved the purchase at the time (my card needed call-in authorization due to a prior theft of the card number). I am putting the dispute in writing to MasterCard. This may be my most effective method. My view is that MasterCard must know that Golden Argosy Factory Export" has been heavily reported as fraudulent. I think MasterCard could have stopped the charge on that basis.

    The "agreement" the Golden Argosy had me sign says they will refund up to 80% in the first three months. It includes the statement "Conditions applicable to customers who directly contact the company only." To me this is part of the many layered scam -- they are grossly dishonest, so I expect any contact with any other authority, like MasterCard would be cited as a reason to refuse a refund. I also do not trust mailing anything to Goldern Argosy. They can not be trusted what so ever.

    Other ideas? I am not the type to let such a thing go.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Re: Bangkok Jewelry scam - again

    Sorry to hear about this. I know you don't want to hear this, but if it sounds too good to be true then it probably is a scam. All too common in Thailand. The scam you mentioned is the most common.

    You are in the same boat as many other people. Read through some of the comments posted on one of our sites for Scams in Thailand:

    http://www.bangkokscams.com/scams-in...-gem-scam.html

    I have already added your comment there. Someone might help.

    Good luck. You will need it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Re: Bangkok Jewelry scam - again

    Quote Originally Posted by RichardSwe View Post
    I have become one more statistic in the scam of tourists by the "Golden Argosy Factory Export." I won't repeat it all here because I find it well described on the web. Suffice it to say that I was fooled by meeting several different, seemingly independent people over several hours. Each person fell into a conversation and eventually added a small piece to the story of why the "government export exhibit" was so special. In the end this ended in tuk-tuk ride to Golden Argosy Factory Export where I bought a large sapphire ring.

    I have returned home and have had the ring appraised. It is real, but I overpaid by 50% over what I paid for comparable jewelry at a very reputable shop. Reputable jewelry will appraise at at least 2X the "wholesale" price paid in Bangkok. This is the retail replacement cost.

    So -- I am now trying to initiate returning the item and get my money back. I am looking for ideas and suggestions.

    I am trying to call the Tourist Assistance Center; it's hard to get through and time zones need to be considered. I do not expect a lot of help here, but will press for help.

    I am trying to find a business associate who is traveling to Bangkok, so that I can have the item hand carried back to the store. Is going to the store for a return safe? Will the police go along?

    Is it useful to contact the American Embassy?

    Will MasterCard get involved if there is known fraud? So far one person at my bank's MasterCard number has said verbally that they will not assist, since I approved the purchase at the time (my card needed call-in authorization due to a prior theft of the card number). I am putting the dispute in writing to MasterCard. This may be my most effective method. My view is that MasterCard must know that Golden Argosy Factory Export" has been heavily reported as fraudulent. I think MasterCard could have stopped the charge on that basis.

    The "agreement" the Golden Argosy had me sign says they will refund up to 80% in the first three months. It includes the statement "Conditions applicable to customers who directly contact the company only." To me this is part of the many layered scam -- they are grossly dishonest, so I expect any contact with any other authority, like MasterCard would be cited as a reason to refuse a refund. I also do not trust mailing anything to Goldern Argosy. They can not be trusted what so ever.

    Other ideas? I am not the type to let such a thing go.

    Thanks.
    I just got my money back,even 90%of it, contact (must call this guy) Ministry of internal trade,mr Suchat Sinrat, 025475358/5356.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Re: Bangkok Jewelry scam - again

    Out of interest, did you "tip" Mr. Suchart for being so helpful to you?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Re: Bangkok Jewelry scam - again

    I sent them a thank you note.

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