BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (CN) - A pawn shop and four of its employees say Target and the City of Birmingham falsely accused them of receiving stolen goods and set up a sting operation to trap them. Big Jim's Pawn Co. claims the "stolen property" used in the sting was not actually stolen, because it had been provided by Target.
According to the complaint in Jefferson County Court, Target received information from shoplifters that the pawn shop would buy stolen merchandise and resell it on eBay.
Target allegedly told city police that Big Jim's was "dirty," and together they planned the sting operation. Police raided two Big Jim's stores and seized merchandise, business records and electronic equipment.
Big Jim's eBay account was terminated and Big Jim's say it has been banned from doing business on eBay. Four employees were criminally charged with receiving stolen items.
But Big Jim's say that none of the merchandise that police seized had actually been stolen and criminal charges against two employees were dismissed.
The plaintiffs seek damages for defamation, negligence and false arrest against. Plaintiffs in both cases are represented by Matt Abbott of Pell City.