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‘Antiques Roadshow’ expert claims buyer scammed his auction house



#Antiques #Roadshow #skilled #claims #purchaser #scammed #public sale #home

A celeb antiques skilled identified for sizing up treasures on “Vintage Roadshow” claims he was duped by a girl who scammed his public sale home out of greater than $100,000 — and is suing to get well the money.

Leigh Keno, who alongside along with his twin brother, Leslie, has lengthy been a fixture on the PBS TV program, says the client appeared legit as she bought $5,000 to $10,000 price of things at a time, and all the time paid the invoice.

“The checks didn’t bounce,” he stated.

The client, whose title seems to be Chihyu Lu however goes by Grace Lu, then went purchasing for a laundry record of Asian furnishings and ornamental gadgets together with a bronze “libation” cup with beast deal with, watercolor portray of a cat and a dragon-carved show cupboard, Keno stated.

She tallied up $178,450 price of products, which Keno stated he let her take with a promise to pay later.

Grace Lu
Leigh Keno claims that he let Grace Lu take residence $178,450 price of merchandise with the promise to pay later however she solely paid a small fraction of the invoice earlier than disappearing.

“I kick myself that I allowed it to occur.,” stated Keno who runs Keno Auctions on the Higher East Facet. “I’ve been within the enterprise my complete life. That is the primary time that this has occurred.”

Lu took about 40 items in July 2020, paying $45,000 however then refusing at hand over the stability of $133,450, in response to a lawsuit filed by the public sale home towards Lu in Manhattan state Supreme Courtroom in 2021.

Lu claims that she tried to resell among the gadgets and was advised they gave the impression to be “later copies,” in response to courtroom papers.

Wall cabinet
Among the many gadgets the lady allegedly stole was a dragon-carved show cupboard.

Keno stated the gadgets weren’t represented as antiques from a specific interval and that Lu had seen them in his showroom over a number of weeks earlier than shopping for.

Lu later bid at one among Keno’s auctions in January 2022 underneath a distinct title, shopping for up virtually half of the sale, Keno stated. He stated when his employees realized it was the identical individual they advised her to pay her complete invoice after which by no means heard again.

Keno stated he was talking out as a result of Lu was allegedly taking different public sale homes for a journey.

The public sale home is suing Grace Lu over the unpaid invoice.

Since 2020, she has bid on greater than $230,000 price of treasures bought by varied public sale homes via the Stay Auctioneers web sites and by no means accomplished the transactions, in response to paperwork reviewed by The Submit.

Amongst these she allegedly stiffed was David Killen, who runs an eponymous public sale home in Chelsea. He advised The Submit that Lu was the profitable bidder on about $13,000 in Asian objects a month in the past and refused to pay for the products or decide them up.

Successful an merchandise at public sale is taken into account a authorized settlement to purchase it, he stated.

Leigh Keno
Leigh Keno says he’s talking out as a result of Grace Lu is scamming different public sale homes as effectively.

Killen stated they’d lose worth if positioned up for public sale once more.

“Individuals suppose, ‘Oh, there should be one thing fallacious with it as a result of the one who purchased it by no means paid for it,’ ” he stated. “It will get what we name within the enterprise a nasty scent to it.”

Killen stated he lastly bought Lu to select up and pay for her gadgets this week when he advised her one other purchaser was prepared to spend hundreds for the $900 “sword leg” desk she received. He stated she got here speeding in to get it and pay her invoice.

Lu didn’t instantly return requests for remark.

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Courtroom papers say Grace Lu tried to resell among the items solely to seek out out they had been later copies and never antiques.