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A rare Pokemon card that sold for $60,000 was lost in the mail last August
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Platinum Card Talk Member
Picture of Kennywood
posted
A rare Pokemon card that sold for $60,000 was lost in the mail last August
By Chris Smith
July 10, 2019 @ 10:12 AM

Two Pokemon Trading Card Game enthusiasts found each other on eBay last year. One was selling the very rare Trainer No. 3, which the other agreed to buy for $60,000. So far, so good. However, the package was then sent via mail, and the card disappeared before reaching its new owner overseas.

Almost a year later, and the two still haven’t found out what happened to the missing package, and now the buyer is ready to pay $1,000 to anyone that can help locate his card.

Trainer No. 3 isn’t a card you can find in Pokemon card booster packs, because it’s a special type of card that was awarded to the third-place finalist of the Super Secret Battle game tournament in Japan twenty years ago. That’s why it’s so expensive — and here’s what it looks like:



“Recently, one of the most valuable cards in the hobby was lost or stolen in the mail,” YouTuber smpratte said in a video (via CNET). “Both buyer and seller, I know both of them very well; they did everything they could to make this as above board and legitimate as possible.”

The card was insured for $50,000 and then shipped to New York. That’s when the card went missing, and even after all the time that has passed since its disappearance, nobody has an explanation so far. The YouTuber who reported on the card believes that this could simply be incompetence, or it could be theft.

If someone really did steal the package after seeing how much it was worth, they might want to check out smpratte’s full video on the matter below, as he explains exactly what can happen to the thief, and why you can’t really resell the card now that it’s gone missing (since, again, it’s incredibly rare).

Source: BGR.com

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Posts: 7140 | Location: ? | Registered: January 14, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Titanium Card Talk Member
Picture of wolfie
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quote:
Originally posted by Kennywood:

The card was insured for $50,000 and then shipped to New York. That’s when the card went missing.



Hey that's New York for ya, it's probably in the spokes of a kids bike down in the Bronx.

I have no idea what i'm talking about. Big Grin

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Posts: 27733 | Location: wolverhampton staffs uk | Registered: July 19, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Raven
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Although it could well have been the PO's fault, I really doubt that they would pay off on that $50,000 insurance. Anybody can insure any package for any amount and no one cares, but once you make a claim on it, just go try to collect without proof of value and an original sales receipt.

How would you prove the value of such a card? Surely not just because two people agree on a price, that could mean nothing without some documented sales and a 1/1 like this was probably never sold. Also both the buyer and seller would have to jump through hoops to prove it wasn't a scam, before the insurance company would approve payment. And then there is still the issue of determining price. You just know that most people wouldn't pay $5 for it. Big Grin I never heard about it.

With something like this going from Japan to New York, and people obviously with money burn, I think the parties should have added the cost of a plane ticket and met at the airport. Wink

BTW, the related video notes that the package was sent to a third-party lockbox type location in NY for re-packaging and re-shipping. This stuff is a great idea until something goes missing and everyone points their finger at someone else. The buyer has opened a private investigation and litigation. I have a strong feeling that with a third party involvement the insurance claim gets that much harder.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Raven,
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Raven:
Although it could well have been the PO's fault, I really doubt that they would pay off on that $50,000 insurance. Anybody can insure any package for any amount and no one cares, but once you make a claim on it, just go try to collect without proof of value and an original sales receipt.


I don't know how it works in whichever country this was sent from (presumably Japan), but here that wouldn't be a problem. This was done on eBay, so a copy of the eBay order confirmation and the Paypal transaction would be completely adequate proof.
 
Posts: 622 | Location: England | Registered: August 16, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yeah, it's a $60K card and they trusted the mail? One of my friends sells fossils. If a specimen is too big and/or too valuable to risk breakage in the mail, he drives it himself (cross-country a few times) to ease his own mind.

If you watch prices on flights like a couple of my friends do, you can sometimes find one to Japan for $800 but it's usually over $1000. The buyer can say he was too busy to spend the time but now he's spending more time trying to figure out where it went.

Jess


quote:
Originally posted by Raven:
Although it could well have been the PO's fault, I really doubt that they would pay off on that $50,000 insurance. Anybody can insure any package for any amount and no one cares, but once you make a claim on it, just go try to collect without proof of value and an original sales receipt.

How would you prove the value of such a card? Surely not just because two people agree on a price, that could mean nothing without some documented sales and a 1/1 like this was probably never sold. Also both the buyer and seller would have to jump through hoops to prove it wasn't a scam, before the insurance company would approve payment. And then there is still the issue of determining price. You just know that most people wouldn't pay $5 for it. Big Grin I never heard about it.

With something like this going from Japan to New York, and people obviously with money burn, I think the parties should have added the cost of a plane ticket and met at the airport. Wink

BTW, the related video notes that the package was sent to a third-party lockbox type location in NY for re-packaging and re-shipping. This stuff is a great idea until something goes missing and everyone points their finger at someone else. The buyer has opened a private investigation and litigation. I have a strong feeling that with a third party involvement the insurance claim gets that much harder.
 
Posts: 844 | Location: San Jose, CA, USA | Registered: December 23, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Platinum Card Talk Member
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quote:
Originally posted by ravenheart:
quote:
Originally posted by Raven:
Although it could well have been the PO's fault, I really doubt that they would pay off on that $50,000 insurance. Anybody can insure any package for any amount and no one cares, but once you make a claim on it, just go try to collect without proof of value and an original sales receipt.


I don't know how it works in whichever country this was sent from (presumably Japan), but here that wouldn't be a problem. This was done on eBay, so a copy of the eBay order confirmation and the Paypal transaction would be completely adequate proof.


Yes, they can confirm the transaction, but so what? I could sell a costume jewelry bracelet worth $5 to someone on eBay that is willing to pay $1000 for it. So does that make it a $1000 bracelet? No it doesn't.

You can always over insure. The insurance companies are happy to take your high premiums. But when it comes time to payout a claim, they will check everything to the last detail. They will not payout a fortune for junk just because it was insured for a fortune. They don't even want to payout perfectly legitimate claims, as a lot of people unfortunately find out when their homes are damaged by storms.

With the issue of trying to pin down value on this type of collectible, and the involvement of a third-party re-shipper, there is a big problem. If the insurance came through, the buyer wouldn't still be in litigation and posting a reward a year later. Unless I am not understanding the case as stated.
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Some details that were not in the original article...

Card is a 1/1, not just rare but unique.

It is PSA graded, adding some means to identify it.

It was signed for as delivered by the 3rd party shipping service, so the USPS considers it's job done. No claim for non-delivery possible. 3rd party says that they just received a bulk lot of cards.

Who insures a package for 83% the value? I know that's the max, but time to rethink using USPS.

As mentioned, a plane ticket to Japan would have been in order.

Sad thing is, there's probably someone out there willing to pay good money on the "black market" for the card, no questions asked.

Ed

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Posts: 4549 | Location: Phoenix, AZ | Registered: March 09, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Platinum Card Talk Member
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Some more info from another forum and some articles that are just popping up now.

This shipping was done using USPS and The Global Shipping Program (GPS). The card was sent to some outfit called Aramex, according to the articles. Aramex signed for it in a bulk delivery and it hasn't been heard from since. They say it wasn't in the delivery.

USPS says it was, got delivered, can prove it and is done. There goes any insurance claim. I guess the litigation is now between the buyer and Aramex.

The general feeling among people who do these things is that such a valuable card should never have been sent by GPS, which required it to go to a third party shipper. It needed person to person delivery, however that could have been arranged. Its a good case study for any future transactions that collectors may do for valuable items.

Not anything I'll ever have to worry about Big Grin, but it does show the loopholes in these "secure" and "insured" systems.
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Gold Card Talk Member
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Scifi Cards:
Some details that were not in the original article...

Card is a 1/1, not just rare but unique.

It is PSA graded, adding some means to identify it.

It was signed for as delivered by the 3rd party shipping service, so the USPS considers it's job done. No claim for non-delivery possible. 3rd party says that they just received a bulk lot of cards.

Who insures a package for 83% the value? I know that's the max, but time to rethink using USPS.

As mentioned, a plane ticket to Japan would have been in order.

Sad thing is, there's probably someone out there willing to pay good money on the "black market" for the card, no questions asked.

Ed


Ed-

Thanks for the details. . .

I assume this was shipped through eBay's global shipping platform. . . Since USPS shows it as delivered I wonder if eBay is on the hook for the insurance payout because of their guarantee. If so that could be why they chose to use eBay's shipping platform and not be able to fully insure the package.

Jon
 
Posts: 4282 | Location: Parts Unknown. | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Contest Czar
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A few months ago I had a 7 dollar book disappear in the mail. I had bought many time from the seller in the past and I have bought two more books that have arrived since. USPS processed the claim since it had the standard up to 50.00 insurance on it. We both talk about where is the book now? What happened? Did it get destroyed? Stolen? Misdirected and kept? I know he sent it. The tracking just stopped at a USPS center.


Now I know that this situation is different but you got to wonder sometimes what happens in the mail.
 
Posts: 5524 | Location: Meridian, Mississippi | Registered: November 23, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by barobehere:
A few months ago I had a 7 dollar book disappear in the mail. I had bought many time from the seller in the past and I have bought two more books that have arrived since. USPS processed the claim since it had the standard up to 50.00 insurance on it. We both talk about where is the book now? What happened? Did it get destroyed? Stolen? Misdirected and kept? I know he sent it. The tracking just stopped at a USPS center.


Now I know that this situation is different but you got to wonder sometimes what happens in the mail.


I had a similar situation years ago. . . Bought an autograph card on eBay that didn't arrive. Got a refund. Like 6 months later the card arrives with a bright red rubber stamp mark on it that read "Found in supposedly empty equipment."

I found it surprising that this apparently happens often enough they had a stamp made for it. . .

I did go back to the seller paid for the card. . .
 
Posts: 4282 | Location: Parts Unknown. | Registered: January 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post



Gold Card Talk Member
Picture of Scifi Cards
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quote:
Originally posted by webjon:
Thanks for the details. . .

I assume this was shipped through eBay's global shipping platform. . . Since USPS shows it as delivered I wonder if eBay is on the hook for the insurance payout because of their guarantee. If so that could be why they chose to use eBay's shipping platform and not be able to fully insure the package.

Jon


Actually, from my understanding it went to a mail forwarding center in NY, not the Pitney Bowes center that GSP uses.

I actually had a sketch card disappear and I obviously gave a refund for after some months since it was going to the UK. 2 years and 7 months later I get an email saying the sketch had arrived. They wanted to pay me for it, I told them not to since it had been so long. No indication of where it had been or why it took so long.

Mail is a funny thing sometimes.

Ed

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Trading Page Now Online: http://www.scifi.cards/trading.html

Collecting Sketches of the Character Crystal

 
Posts: 4549 | Location: Phoenix, AZ | Registered: March 09, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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There was a time when fossils sent to me from France were lost and the ones I had sent in trade were lost as well. It appeared someone at the local post office was stealing small parcels. The customs label on the outside advertises the contents to anyone working out back watching for anything interesting. I started going to a post office more out-of-the-way and didn't have that problem again.

That's the thing I don't understand about people stealing random packages off doorsteps. A lot of people have front yard cameras and the contents aren't listed on the box. A lot of packages aren't valuable either. If someone stole my packages, they would get books and cards. My brother wanted an illustrated English edition of "Beowulf" for Christmas so I ordered it. What's the street value of that?

Jess



quote:
Originally posted by Scifi Cards:
quote:
Originally posted by webjon:
Thanks for the details. . .

I assume this was shipped through eBay's global shipping platform. . . Since USPS shows it as delivered I wonder if eBay is on the hook for the insurance payout because of their guarantee. If so that could be why they chose to use eBay's shipping platform and not be able to fully insure the package.

Jon


Actually, from my understanding it went to a mail forwarding center in NY, not the Pitney Bowes center that GSP uses.

I actually had a sketch card disappear and I obviously gave a refund for after some months since it was going to the UK. 2 years and 7 months later I get an email saying the sketch had arrived. They wanted to pay me for it, I told them not to since it had been so long. No indication of where it had been or why it took so long.

Mail is a funny thing sometimes.

Ed
 
Posts: 844 | Location: San Jose, CA, USA | Registered: December 23, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Someone recently sent me a Priority Mail package from CA, with tracking. Supposed to take 2-3 days tops

Had $ 20 worth of cards inside.

It took 6 weeks to get from CA to NY. Tracking showed that it went to some distribution center in CA and just sat there for weeks. No one knows why.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: NY | Registered: August 03, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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