Read What People have to Say

As you can see by these emails it is very easy to get fooled. Remember that in a case of Art Fraud it is better to be safe than out the painting or sculpture and the money for shipping and handling. Don't fall for their stories you must get the money up front and that is all there is to it. If a buyer is honest and up front they will understand and not expect anything less.

Subject: fradulent creditcards used to purchase artwork
Date: Wed, 11 Jun 2003 12:28:41 -0700
From: "atelcrml" <>
To: <>

We were recently contacted by a person saying that he was interested in a
particular painting we had on our website. He then proceeded to offer us
several credit cards. We had a strange feeling about this, so we went to our
bank and had them run the numbers. It came up that these credit cards were
issued here in the US. So we called the issuing bank and, sure enough they
were all stolen numbers from Americans. This cheat had evidently hacked into
the banks data base or bought the numbers from someone who had (possibly
even an employee of the bank). We turned all of the information to the fraud
department and they in turn turned it over to the Justice Department.

The plan was for us to charge these cards, ship the painting and then have
several charge backs for us to deal with. All the time we were fighting with
the banks, he would be enjoying the painting for free.

Our recommendation to you when you have an offer from overseas. Work in
conjunction with your bank. We do not accept credit cards from overseas
unless we have first cleared with your bank and the funds remain in our
account for ten business days before we ship anything. Otherwise, the buyer
must make their purchase by wire transfer.

Look out for buyers from Indonesia!


Brian Westbrook
Atelier Carmel
16th through 20th century fine art


Subject: me too
Date: Tue, 10 Jun 2003 22:09:16 +0100
From: "Sophie Howard" <>
To: <>

Thanks for the email about the art fraud. I have had the following correspondence which does not ring true. I have hopefully avoided any problems, as I asked him to phone me, and fortunately could not be rushed into anything. Keep up the good work. I have included here all but the last of my messages to him:

              These are actual emails which are believed to be bogus [unedited]
As you can see by the dates the first email starts at the bottom

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "charles ezimoha" <>
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, May 22, 2003 9:24 AM
Subject: Re: An order

Hello Sophie,
Sorry i've not been able to contact you due to my movements as to the satisfaction of my clients.  Sophie,i really need those which i asked from you,however it needs to be   made please try and see if you can get them ready or therwise have something 
 close to that, for something close to that may also suit the taste of my client.  I naad you to keep this ready and estimate the prise it would cost,my client   is getting tired over my business with him.I have been off to sweden with my   client for a business hope to be in London soon.  The shipping would be to Charsworth,Califonia,to my client.  Hope to contact you soon.My clent shall make out a check soon so that we can   commence payment as long as the goods are ready.  Your anticipated reply is needed.
 Best Regards
From: "Sophie Howard" <>
To: "charles ezimoha" <>
Subject: Re: An order
Date: Sun, 11 May 2003 12:39:17 +0100

Dear Charles,

Thanks for your reply. I am very glad to find a customer who is so direct
and keen. I understand that if you are selling items on to another person/s
you need to make a profit, and so must I.

The two items that you have asked about are ones for which only one 
original was made.

Family group is no longer with me, it is a portrait of some friends, and made of fired clay. It is shown on the website as an example. However if  you think it is the kind of piece which you could sell I would be happy to make others. I could model an original item and then cast it in some strong material, such as a resin/metal. In that way more than one copy can be  made.
Do you think you would have a market for such? These, being about 8 inches
high, would need to sold, as a trade price, at about 160 each. At present  I
am unable to make one-off ceramic items, but if that is what you are interested in I can find out more.

The Dylan figure is similar. It is a larger piece and is only made in painted plaster. Therefore it is very delicate and cannot be sold for a proper price. It  would be possible to cast this piece, indeed I have not sold it off because I have always wanted to reproduce it. To reproduce  such an item well is a costly business, both in money and time,and only worth doing if each piece can be sold for a good price. If I was to invest in it and make copies I would have to sell them at a minimum of about 400 as a trade price. I would expect to retail them at 750.

I do have some pieces which I am already reproducing if you would like to know which ones i can show you.

I hope I have not put too many obstacles in your way. I am in Bristol England. Please tell me where you are in the world? Sending items can sometimes be difficult and costly, and needs to be considered as I am sure you know.

Yours sincerely

Sophie Howard

----- Original Message -----
From: "charles ezimoha" <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, May 10, 2003 1:18 PM
Subject: Re: An order

i've viewed u'r gallery as i would like to order these fine art sculputres;Dylan and FAMILY GROUP .Do tell me u'r best price possible as i'd be purchasing from you directly and should make some profit off this proceedings.Thanks in anticipation of u'r reply. 

From: "Sophie Howard" <>
To: "charles ezimoha" <>
Subject: Re: An order
Date: Thu, 8 May 2003 20:56:01 +0100

Dear Charles,

Thank you for your email.

I make many types of sculpture and would be happy to send you more information about the work that I do. If you have not already done so please take a look at my website and let me know what kind of thing you would like to know more about. You may also wish to know about prices, delivery options etc.

Many thanks
Sophie Howard

----- Original Message -----
From: "charles ezimoha" <>
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, May 08, 2003 5:30 PM
Subject: An order

 I want to view your paintings(or sculptures).Hope you have a variety of  them.I am will to make a choice and also make a purchase of them. Please send me a reply with a good pictures of them so that i make a selection. I hope to do good business with you as i need this urgently to make a display to my clents who are willing to make payments for as long as it  suits their taste.