MANHATTAN (CN) – A Georgia man was arrested Wednesday and charged with selling $1 million worth of fake, vintage horror movie posters and lobby cards through eBay.
Kerry Haggard, 45, of Commerce, Ga., is accused of using a New York-based printing company and a restoration artist to fabricate nearly 100 vintage horror movie posters and lobby cards
In the 1920s, Hollywood introduced posters and lobby cards for movie theaters to display in their lobbies. Today, these products are sought-after collectibles.
Prosecutors say Haggard manufactured posters and cards for vintage horror movies like “Frankenstein,” “Son of Frankenstein,” “Mummy’s Hand” and “Murder in the Rue Morgue.”
He sold these items on eBay to about 25 victims for $500 to $5,000, or traded the fakes to other collectors in exchange for real lobby cards or posters, prosecutors say.
Haggard produced the bogus artifacts by directing the printing company to make high-quality, color copies from images that he provided, according to prosecutors.
After the company made 100 copies from the 60 scans that Haggard provided, prosecutors say a restoration artist glued the copies to sanded-down lobby cards and airbrushed the pieces to make them look like original works from the 1930s or 1940s.
The restoration artist told prosecutors he made 90 pieces, including multiple copies of the same image.
Prosecutors say Haggard’s victims discovered they bought fakes when they submitted the works to auction houses or to other restoration experts.
Haggard is charged with one count of mail fraud and faces up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine if convicted.