eBay Target of Fraud Investigation

Online auctioneer
is being targeted by New York City officials over allegations of
fraud in an investigation that could be expanded to include the federal

According to published reports, the investigation of eBay was prompted by
reports that disreputable sports memorabilia dealers have allegedly sold
one-of-a-kind items to more than one person.

The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs would not comment on the
case, but the New York Post reported the agency is believed to have
made purchases through eBay to bolster its case.

eBay’s troubles may just be beginning, according to the newspaper, because
Consumer Affairs is planning to charge eBay with fraud. Although eBay does
not play any role in actually matching up buyers and sellers, officials
believe they can charge eBay with fraud because it collects a commission on
all sales.

Consumer Affiars believes it will build a case that is strong enough to be
transferred to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

eBay said fraud complaints are not a major problem. The service said it
receives about 27 complains for each million transactions. The company
refused to directly comment on New York’s investigation.

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