Coin dealers accuse eBay and the ANA of 'conspiracy'



2015-06-26 11:36:56

Coin dealers accuse eBay and the ANA of 'conspiracy'

Judge orders ongoing court case involving eBay and the American Numismatic Association (ANA) to California

A U.S. District Court senior Judge has ordered that the ongoing court case between eBay and the Universal Grading Service be moved to California to be closer to the defendants' offices.

The case concerns allegations of 'conspiracy' brought by coin dealers against eBay.

Other defendants include the American Numismatics Association (ANA), the Professional Numismatists Guild (PNG) and outgoing ANA President Barry Stuppler's coin firm.

The above are accused of conspiring to, "obstruct the ability of the smaller coin grading services to participate in the coin marketplace on eBay."

The basis of the claim is that, in 2001, eBay, "formed a group that became known as the 'Internet rules committee' made up of coin industry insiders..."

This group included, "Barry Stuppler, in his capacity as then ANA governor and chairman of the ANA Consumer Protection Committee... Doug Winter, a PNG dealer; and R. Steven Ivy," of Heritage.

eBay allegedly developed a policy permitting, "only coins that have been graded by five grading services (NGC, NCS, PCGS, ICG, and ANACS) to be listed for sale on eBay as "certified" coins.

"The protagonists claim these actions are anti-competitive and illegal."

The summons and complaint were originally filed in late August 2008.

The four plaintiffs are: Universal Grading Service, LLC, a firm of New Jersey coin graders; John Callandrello, a shareholder of UGS; Joseph Komito from New Jersey and Kirichenko from New York, both online coin dealers.

Both Komito and Kirichenko used eBay to buy and sell coins.

U.S. District Court senior Judge Charles Sifton's decision responded to the defendant's motion to either dismiss the complaint for failure to state a relievable claim, or move the court venue to California, closer to eBay's and the Suppler firm's offices.

Sifton believed moving the case off to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California would best serve all parties.

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