Macy's makes good on fake diamonds

Macy's makes good on fake diamonds

Macy's makes good on fake diamonds

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by By WAYNE HAVRELLY, KGW.com

kgw.com

Posted on October 29, 2009 at 11:00 PM

Updated Monday, Jun 28 at 12:17 PM

What glitters isn't always gold, or even a diamond for that matter.

One of our viewers found that out the hard way. Months after buying what Glenn Winther thought was a diamond tennis bracelet for his wife, the couple discovered the diamonds were fake.

"Look at the receipt it says diamonds, 3 carat weight," said Winther. It was purchased as a Christmas president and initially, it was a big hit with his wife Lana.

"Wow I thought it was so pretty," said Lana Winther. The bracelet was marked down from $2400 to just under $700. The clasp on the bracelet quickly broke, so the sentimental gift sat in Lana's jewelry case until a few weeks ago.

"Glenn asked me 'why aren't you wearing it.' He said for the money he paid that shouldn't happen and I should take it back to where I bought it," said Lana.

The bracelet was purchased at Macy's.

When Lana took it back to the stores fine jewelry department she got quite a shock. The manager told her the diamonds were fake. They were familiar with the bracelet because it was sold as costume jewelry at Macy's.

"That's really funny because my husband said they were diamonds. He would not have done that," said Lana.

Glenn said, "My first thought was 'boy they really made me look bad.'"

Spotting fake diamonds used to be easy, but some of the new fakes are so real looking even professional diamond testing machines can't spot them.

To protect his business, long time Vancouver pawnbroker Dan Maks had no choice but to buy a new high tech testing machine to make sure he could tell the difference between fakes - and real diamonds. Jewelers and pawnbrokers everywhere have done the same thing to protect their businesses from phony diamonds.

The Winthers complained about the fake diamonds in their bracelet, but even with the receipt, the Clackamas town Center Macy's manager said it wasn't Macy's responsibility.

A company called Finlay enterprises used to lease the fine jewelry space from Macy's. Records show the company went bankrupt a few months back and is no longer in business.

"But they still called it Macy's and I've got a Macy's receipt and I was in a Macy's store," said Maks.

Newschannel 8's Wayne Havrelly contacted corporate officials with Macy's. They promptly looked into the situation and responded saying "Macy's regrets the Winthers had this experience and our company never intended to sell fake diamonds as real.

The leased jeweler in question is no longer associated with Macy's and we now have safeguards to prevent fake diamonds from ending up in the hands of customers in the fine jewelry department."

"Macy's regrets the Winther's had this experience and say they never intended to sell fake diamonds as real. The leased jeweler is no longer associated with Macy's and we now have safeguards to prevent fake diamonds from ending up in the hands of customers in the fine jewelry department."

Macy's now operates its own jewelry department and company officials say every diamond is now checked when it comes into their stores plus there's an additional check after purchase before customers leave.

Following our Newschannel 8 investigation, the Winther's have been offered an apology plus Lana exchanged her fake diamonds for a real diamond 3 carat bracelet that she loves.

Both Lana and Glenn are thrilled and say they are anxious to do plenty of Christmas shopping at Macy's.

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