Red Wings star Sergei Fedorov's autograph is a hot commodity in the Detroit area.
who is holding out because of a contract squabble, has not done a show or signing
since winning the Cup last June.
With his absence, the supply of Fedorov
autographs has dried up, until recently. Simeron Matijasevic - a Windsor, Ontario,
tool and die worker - allegedly forged Fedorov's autograph on photographs and
sold them to dealers for $10-$15 at the Mt.Clemens Gibraltar Trade Center recently.
dealers didn't stop to think why Matijasevic had so many Fedorov autographs. Soon
the allegedly forged autographed photos were seen at many booths throughout the
However, dealer Ken Lindsay did not fall for the scam. Lindsay
who believed the autographs weren't authentic, warned the dealers of the situation,
but some did not believe him.
Lindsay bought a few of the questionable autographed
photos from dealers and called Fedorov's business agent, Brent Charnock. Later,
Charnock and Lindsay went to Fedorov's house with the allegedly forged photos
and a video camera. Fedorov said on videotape the autographs were phonies. He
then signed his autograph next to the questionable signatures.
duo returned to the show on Sunday with the evidence, they found Matijasevic walking
the show floor offering the questionable signatures once again.
police were called and Matijasevic was arrested. If convicted, he could be sentenced
to 10 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
In addition, Lindsay said there
were Steve Yzerman phonies allegedly involved, along with questionable autographed
cards of Vladimir Konstantinov that were allegedly printed after his June 13 automobile
accident. Obviously, Konstantinov has not been able to sign since the accident.
of his efforts, an official of the Gibraltar Trade Center and other prominent
dealers and collectors have applauded Lindsay's efforts and called him a hero.
collectors and dealers questioned why some dealers bought the allegedly forged
photos without knowing who they were dealing with. Some dealers even got letters
of authenticity with their autographs.
The hobby needs more honest dealers
like Lindsay who have the guts to go after the scam artists who are threatening
the whole autograph segment of the hobby.