View Full Version : FBI looking into James Spence??

08-05-2011, 03:53 PM
Not a surprise..SMH

Full Artical

James Spence Authentication (JSA) recently authenticated a Jack Johnson autograph on a trading card issued two years after the boxer’s death. They authenticated an alleged Harry Wright signature that was actually signed by a 19th century telegraph operator (the item was pulled from three different auctions). They even authenticated secretarial signatures of Presidents Warren Harding and Zachary Taylor as genuine. In addition, AutographAlert.com published an investigative report that exposed how the authentication company failed to authenticate a host of genuine items that they had previously certified as authentic.

And who can forget JSA’s authentication of a 19th-century letter alleged to have been written by Hall of Famer Ed Delahanty. Even though the auction house selling the letter in 2006 was presented with authentic exemplars of Delahanty’s signature and handwriting directly from Delahanty’s relatives and his biographer, Dr. Jerrold Casway, JSA went ahead and authenticated the document that was actually written in 1899 as a secretarial letter by Delahanty’s Phillies manager, Billy Shettsline. What’s more, the signature of Delahanty on the letter was even misspelled, D-E-L-E-H-A-N-T-Y. JSA didn’t even note in their LOA that the name was misspelled.

Unfortunately, a collector relying on JSA’s advertised expertise paid over $30,000 for the bogus letter and later consigned it to Robert Edward Auctions in 2009. At the time, experts informed REA of the problems with the letter, but the auction house didn’t withdraw it until Delahanty’s biographer, Dr. Jerrold Casway, produced period newspaper reports showing that Delahanty was in Cleveland on December 27, 1899. The letter JSA authenticated was written by manager Billy Shettsline in, “Philada(lphia), Pa. Dec. 27, 1899.”

In the last few weeks, Haulsofshame.com readers have identified a number of other questionable JSA authentications of Hall of Famer signatures featured in sales as the Spring baseball auction circuit swings into full gear. Browsing catalogues and websites packed with thousands of items available for consumers, an army of collectors may be unknowingly placing bids on forgeries of Hall of Famers with a false sense of security that what they are buying is authentic-simply because it comes with a letter of authenticity (LOA) from JSA. Our readers have recently made us aware that JSA has certified as authentic several questionable signatures alleged to have been penned by Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig and Ty Cobb.

From EBAY to major auction houses, errors and mistakes abound, and a recent interview by Haulsofshame.com with an individual, who has spoken regularly with the FBI over the past year, indicates that James Spence and JSA have been the subject of complaints made to the the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The long-time autograph collector revealed to us correspondence brought to the attention of the Director of the FBI, Robert Mueller, that illustrates the need for a full-investigation into the work executed by third-party authenticators, including JSA. Backlash against JSA and other third party authenticators has recently come to light thanks to the watchful eye of veteran dealers and collectors on Internet websites and forums like AutographAlert.com and Net54. Our source, urged collectors and dealers to report all suspect items authenticated by JSA to the New York office of the FBI at: ny1@ic.fbi.gov. Our source also suggests that anyone who feels they have been victimized by a JSA letter of authenticity should report their situation to the New Jersey Attorney General’s office Division of Consumer Affairs at: askconsumeraffairs@lps.state.nj.us.

08-05-2011, 07:47 PM
I still dont see a GAI collapse happening to JSA or PSA

08-06-2011, 01:01 PM
Yeah, I don't expect these places to last much longer. I hope they shut them down.

08-09-2011, 01:56 PM
This needs a bump so everyone can really see JSA is a joke!