Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: UK Mail - Fake stamps

  1. #1
    Senior Member Fermata's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    488
    Thanks
    187
    Thanked 582 Times in 296 Posts
    Rep Power
    5

    Default UK Mail - Fake stamps

    There is a wave of fake postage stamps being sold through corner shops and on line, this may not be a new problem but it is an increasing one.


    A friend of mine received a letter with a fine to pay, 7, the Royal Mail said that the stamp was fake and it was down to him to pay the fine if he wanted the letter (to add insult to injury it was a bill)




    He studied the stamp and it looked perfect. He contacted the sender who sent him a pic of the book of stamps





    At first inspection the stamps looked perfect. He took a ruler to the stamps and they were a tiny bit out of line, but not so much as you would notice. The book itself was a genuine Royal Mail book although the stamps were not and did not have a special coating on them as used by Royal Mail.

    The sender had bought the stamps from a corner shop which were sold from a Royal Mail clear plastic display, the shop even gave the sender a receipt as it was a business purchase, the price charged was the full price of a Royal Mail first class stamp.

    Royal Mail Fraud team have become involved.

    I had heard of people reusing unfranked stamps and applying their own glue but not these self adhesive stamps, to be honest they would have fooled me.

    Take care on where you buy your stamps for the Christmas mail

  2. #2
    Senior Member mizgeorge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2020
    Posts
    2,318
    Thanks
    710
    Thanked 1,299 Times in 703 Posts
    Rep Power
    4

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    I had something delivered from an Amazon seller who'd used some of these - and judging by the feedback I was far from alone. They had to refund and pay the Royal Mail ransom back to me as well.

    I switched to online postage during the first lockdown and haven't used anything else since. This all makes me quite glad I did.

  3. #3
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    8,318
    Thanks
    4,389
    Thanked 7,494 Times in 2,984 Posts
    Rep Power
    19

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by mizgeorge View Post
    I had something delivered from an Amazon seller who'd used some of these - and judging by the feedback I was far from alone. They had to refund and pay the Royal Mail ransom back to me as well.

    I switched to online postage during the first lockdown and haven't used anything else since. This all makes me quite glad I did.
    The only RM ransom fee I've ever been asked for was 2 for a 1st class letter and I refused to pay it.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Clinging desperately to planet Earth
    Posts
    404
    Thanks
    32
    Thanked 381 Times in 229 Posts
    Rep Power
    6

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by mizgeorge View Post
    I had something delivered from an Amazon seller who'd used some of these - and judging by the feedback I was far from alone. They had to refund and pay the Royal Mail ransom back to me as well.

    I switched to online postage during the first lockdown and haven't used anything else since. This all makes me quite glad I did.
    Similar situation here.

  5. #5
    Senior Member FredRydr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Carlisle, Pennsylvania USA
    Posts
    4,154
    Thanks
    1,073
    Thanked 4,916 Times in 2,085 Posts
    Rep Power
    15

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by Fermata View Post
    ...A friend of mine received a letter with a fine to pay, 7, the Royal Mail said that the stamp was fake and it was down to him to pay the fine if he wanted the letter (to add insult to injury it was a bill)....
    A bill? I trust your friend will be reducing the amount paid to his/her creditor by 7.

    If the envelope has a return address, certainly Royal Mail should be seeking to penalize the sender, not the recipient.

  6. #6
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    8,318
    Thanks
    4,389
    Thanked 7,494 Times in 2,984 Posts
    Rep Power
    19

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by FredRydr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fermata View Post
    ...A friend of mine received a letter with a fine to pay, 7, the Royal Mail said that the stamp was fake and it was down to him to pay the fine if he wanted the letter (to add insult to injury it was a bill)....
    A bill? I trust your friend will be reducing the amount paid to his/her creditor by 7.

    If the envelope has a return address, certainly Royal Mail should be seeking to penalize the sender, not the recipient.
    7 was either an error or a typo not the correct fee. The yellow sticker on the envelope shows 2 before it was checked through as paid. Royal Mail fees for insufficient postage are on their website here and it confirms that a letter or large letter is charged at 2 if no postage is paid or 1.50 if insufficient postage is paid.

    Screen Shot 2021-10-19 at 06.38.21.png
    Last edited by Chrissy; October 19th, 2021 at 12:43 AM.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

  7. #7
    Senior Member grainweevil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Cornwall, UK
    Posts
    1,572
    Thanks
    269
    Thanked 881 Times in 460 Posts
    Rep Power
    10

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    But it wasn't paid, it was "PAFD"ed. . Terrible handwriting, and a good argument for adopting the continental seven with the bar - no mistakes then.

    Royal Mail have rather asked for this by making stamps into a valuable item owing to the incessant price rises. However, peering at the pics it doesn't appear that these fakes have the anti-removal cut outs, and frankly I'd be amazed if they did, so that's probably a good thing to check. I'd be sorry to lose stamps and everything go to online printed off labels; stamps are lovely little miniature pieces of art, and some of them are downright educational. Printed off labels are dull as ditchwater.
    In the words of Paul Simon, you can call me Al.

  8. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to grainweevil For This Useful Post:

    Morgaine (October 19th, 2021), Yazeh (October 20th, 2021)

  9. #8
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    8,318
    Thanks
    4,389
    Thanked 7,494 Times in 2,984 Posts
    Rep Power
    19

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by grainweevil View Post
    But it wasn't paid, it was "PAFD"ed. . Terrible handwriting, and a good argument for adopting the continental seven with the bar - no mistakes then.

    Royal Mail have rather asked for this by making stamps into a valuable item owing to the incessant price rises. However, peering at the pics it doesn't appear that these fakes have the anti-removal cut outs, and frankly I'd be amazed if they did, so that's probably a good thing to check. I'd be sorry to lose stamps and everything go to online printed off labels; stamps are lovely little miniature pieces of art, and some of them are downright educational. Printed off labels are dull as ditchwater.
    Agreed it's a badly written 2 and a badly written PAID. Since that's the most they can charge for that service they probably assume everyone knows what it is.
    Good spot on the lack of cut-outs. An easy way to know the stamps are fake.

    I can't imagine why anyone would ever pay. Failure of the sender to stamp an envelope and the recipient being asked to pay but refusing to do so was originally seen as a method of knowing your friend/relative was still alive way back in Victorian times. You can ask to see the item and refuse to pay. I've done that a couple of times and both were greetings cards with no return address. No idea who tried to send one of them.
    Last edited by Chrissy; October 19th, 2021 at 04:58 AM.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

  10. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Clinging desperately to planet Earth
    Posts
    404
    Thanks
    32
    Thanked 381 Times in 229 Posts
    Rep Power
    6

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Let's be honest here. We live in an age in which morality, ethics, and honesty are values that too many people seem to lack. Greed and wealth-envy motivates a lot of people to do whatever it takes -- even cheating and stealing -- to make a quid any way they can.

  11. #10
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    8,318
    Thanks
    4,389
    Thanked 7,494 Times in 2,984 Posts
    Rep Power
    19

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by An old bloke View Post
    Let's be honest here. We live in an age in which morality, ethics, and honesty are values that too many people seem to lack. Greed and wealth-envy motivates a lot of people to do whatever it takes -- even cheating and stealing -- to make a quid any way they can.
    Sad but true. I've seen ebay sellers actually trying to charge a total amount of more than the original stamp price for postally used but unfranked stamps!
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

  12. #11
    Senior Member Fermata's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    488
    Thanks
    187
    Thanked 582 Times in 296 Posts
    Rep Power
    5

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by grainweevil View Post
    But it wasn't paid, it was "PAFD"ed. . Terrible handwriting, and a good argument for adopting the continental seven with the bar - no mistakes then.

    Royal Mail have rather asked for this by making stamps into a valuable item owing to the incessant price rises. However, peering at the pics it doesn't appear that these fakes have the anti-removal cut outs, and frankly I'd be amazed if they did, so that's probably a good thing to check. I'd be sorry to lose stamps and everything go to online printed off labels; stamps are lovely little miniature pieces of art, and some of them are downright educational. Printed off labels are dull as ditchwater.
    Good point on the cut-outs.

    For those that are not aware of these things they are pre cut holes in stamps which are designed to prevent an unfranked stamp being used twice.

    I am not sure that in a busy newsagents I would open a purchased book of stamps in order to check their validity, perhaps I will in the future.


    Fraud prevention has been an obsession of Royal Mail going back to 1840 when they played around with different franking methods, plate numbers and even changing the colour of stamps to keep the fraudsters on the back foot.

    I agree with you GW on keeping stamps going, Commemorative and Christmas stamps are always attractive and I know people around the world who like to receive them, not forgetting a good income stream for charities who sell kiloware. In fact, I would not be at all surprised if there were not some keen stamp collectors who specifically collect fakes, especially franked fakes.


    eta

    i have only had one situation where anything like this has happened. I had a card through the door saying I had to pay x for an unstamped letter. which was the original cost plus a fine. I went down to the sorting office, paid the amount due for an A4 manilla envelope, correctly addressed. Inside was a single sheet advertising a new Renault car, suggesting I contacted my named Renault dealer. never had a Renault in my life. Went down to the named dealers, flounced in, very indignant, expecting to be given my x back, they could not care less.
    Last edited by Fermata; October 19th, 2021 at 05:22 AM.

  13. #12
    Senior Member Empty_of_Clouds's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    2,736
    Thanks
    620
    Thanked 2,158 Times in 1,038 Posts
    Rep Power
    10

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Stunning! Why should the receiver be responsible for a postage error made by the sender?

    Even here in New Zealand the national carrier notes that:


    If an item does not have enough postage for delivery, we may

    Return the item to the sender - if your item is returned, the original postage will have been used. To resend your item you will need to apply the full and correct amount of postage.

    Delay the item OR

    Deliver it - if we deliver the item, we may charge a handling fee to the receiver in addition to the shortfall in postage

    I would like to believe the receiver can refuse to accept delivery under these circumstances.

  14. #13
    Senior Member Fermata's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Posts
    488
    Thanks
    187
    Thanked 582 Times in 296 Posts
    Rep Power
    5

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_of_Clouds View Post
    Stunning! Why should the receiver be responsible for a postage error made by the sender?

    Even here in New Zealand the national carrier notes that:


    If an item does not have enough postage for delivery, we may

    Return the item to the sender - if your item is returned, the original postage will have been used. To resend your item you will need to apply the full and correct amount of postage.

    Delay the item OR

    Deliver it - if we deliver the item, we may charge a handling fee to the receiver in addition to the shortfall in postage

    I would like to believe the receiver can refuse to accept delivery under these circumstances.
    What should happen and actuality is different, especially if there is no outward clue on the senders address. I might be wrong but I think that there are rules on situations where the mail company can open letters.


    Fake stamps have been going on since the 1860s, especially during WW2 when most of the countries involved produced fake stamps including the use of a jewish star on a UK stamp and depicting Hitler as a ghoulish figure with the label Futsches reich (ruined empire).

    But, back to EoC's point, who should pay the cost plus a fine? The recipient who may be curious about what is in the envelope or the sender who knows the contents and can simply send again if the letter is important or forget all about it if (as in my case) it was just advertising material.

  15. #14
    Senior Member eachan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2020
    Location
    Highlands of Scotland
    Posts
    432
    Thanks
    1,104
    Thanked 710 Times in 283 Posts
    Rep Power
    2

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by An old bloke View Post
    Let's be honest here. We live in an age in which morality, ethics, and honesty are values that too many people seem to lack. Greed and wealth-envy motivates a lot of people to do whatever it takes -- even cheating and stealing -- to make a quid any way they can.
    It was ever thus.

  16. #15
    Senior Member Empty_of_Clouds's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    2,736
    Thanks
    620
    Thanked 2,158 Times in 1,038 Posts
    Rep Power
    10

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Back in the old days (UK) you could phone someone from a payphone (public phone box) via the operator and request the charges be reversed so the receiver pays. However, the receiver wasn't obligated to accept this and if they said no the call would not go through.

    Similarly, I doubt that the Post Office can legally enforce a charge on a receiver if the receiver doesn't accept delivery, considering that it is the sender's actions that have led to the shortfall in postage.

    Besides that, the postage should have been checked and rejected at the sorting office, and the item not allowed to travel through the system.

  17. #16
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Clinging desperately to planet Earth
    Posts
    404
    Thanks
    32
    Thanked 381 Times in 229 Posts
    Rep Power
    6

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_of_Clouds View Post
    Back in the old days (UK) you could phone someone from a payphone (public phone box) via the operator and request the charges be reversed so the receiver pays. However, the receiver wasn't obligated to accept this and if they said no the call would not go through.

    Similarly, I doubt that the Post Office can legally enforce a charge on a receiver if the receiver doesn't accept delivery, considering that it is the sender's actions that have led to the shortfall in postage.

    Besides that, the postage should have been checked and rejected at the sorting office, and the item not allowed to travel through the system.
    I agree.

    What's going to happen if one doesn't accept delivery? The item is either going to be returned to the sender or binned. If it's binned, and it was important to the sender, the sender is going to send another copy or contact the receiver in another way (email, phone, etc.) After all, as alluded by EOC, isn't the post much the same as the telephone. Given the annoyance of constant calls from telemarketers, I for one, do not answer any call from a number that I do not recognise. With that, I'm not about to accept delivery of a postage due letter. Parcels are a different matter if it something I expect.

  18. #17
    FPG Donor ♕ Chrissy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    8,318
    Thanks
    4,389
    Thanked 7,494 Times in 2,984 Posts
    Rep Power
    19

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    Quote Originally Posted by An old bloke View Post
    I agree.

    What's going to happen if one doesn't accept delivery? The item is either going to be returned to the sender or binned. If it's binned, and it was important to the sender, the sender is going to send another copy or contact the receiver in another way (email, phone, etc.) After all, as alluded by EOC, isn't the post much the same as the telephone. Given the annoyance of constant calls from telemarketers, I for one, do not answer any call from a number that I do not recognise. With that, I'm not about to accept delivery of a postage due letter. Parcels are a different matter if it something I expect.
    No need for guesswork as there is an official Royal Mail line:
    There is absolutely no requirement for any recipient to pay for an incorrectly stamped letter. The postal slip merely advises there is an item of incorrectly stamped mail for them that they can have if they pay the amount on the card. If they don't wish to pay the amount requested then the item is held for 18 days before being returned to sender. That assumes there is a return address on the outside of the item. If there is no return address on the outside then after 18 days the item is sent to the National Return Centre in Belfast and is officially opened in order to find a return address. If that still yields no return address then depending on the item some are destroyed and some may be recycled or auctioned. Those amounts raised fund the National Return Centre.
    No other contact will be made by any other method. At least not for letters. Valuables will get extra searches.
    Last edited by Chrissy; October 20th, 2021 at 05:33 AM.
    Regards, Chrissy | My Blog: inkyfountainpens

  19. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Chrissy For This Useful Post:

    eachan (October 20th, 2021), Empty_of_Clouds (October 20th, 2021)

  20. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2016
    Location
    Clinging desperately to planet Earth
    Posts
    404
    Thanks
    32
    Thanked 381 Times in 229 Posts
    Rep Power
    6

    Default Re: UK Mail - Fake stamps

    That, Chrissy, confirms what I said earlier -- the recipient shouldn't pay since he or she is effectively being scammed by the Royal Mail and the sender.

  21. The Following User Says Thank You to An old bloke For This Useful Post:

    Chrissy (October 20th, 2021)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •