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Home arrow Forgery News arrow Fake Autographs Turn into Real Help for Baseball Charity

Fake Autographs Turn into Real Help for Baseball Charity Print E-mail
Written by Sport Collector's Diggest   
Friday, 24 September 2010

Through its sheer numbers, the phony autographs seized by the FBI during the famous Operation Bullpen raid in October of 1999 made headlines.

The most prolific member of the forgery ring, Greg Marino, told FBI investigators that he had worked day and night for years, signing as many as one million autographs.

A lot of them wound up in FBI files and storage rooms.

Some were destroyed.

Many came to rest in the hands of unsuspecting collectors.  A lot of them are probably still sitting on shelves all over North America, their owners blissfully unaware they own a Marino, not a Mantle.

The autographed sports memorabilia churned out by the industry’s biggest forgery ring of all time was staggering.  The FBI finally caught up with those responsible and seized more than 10,000 baseballs carrying faked signatures of everyone from Babe Ruth to Ronald Reagan. There were more bogus items, of course.   So many it took a 10,000-square foot southern California warehouse to hold them all.   If they had all been real, the value would have easily topped $10 million at the time.

(read full report)

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