[CNBC] Amazon sellers say they were kicked off site after unknowingly hawking stolen goods

Perhaps buying direct from a manufacturer or an authorized distributor is a good idea?

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lol…“unknowingly” is doing some heavy lifting there.

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I’m having flashbacks to the OSFE, hundreds of posts from “experts” insisting that where the items are sourced from doesn’t matter as long as they are “real.”

Idiots.

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Next you’re going to tell me that these sweet Air Jordans I got from China are fake…

:man_shrugging:
If the shoe fits…

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I didn’t know I was selling stolen goods, so no crime right?

Nope That is a crime

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Excellent article, and I have zero sympathy.
Maybe less.
“Unknowingly” doesn’t mean “without culpability” or “without consequences”.

Amazon sellers are supposed to vet suppliers before they work with them.

Part of this is the specific supply chain, in its entirety. Just because you failed–intentionally or otherwise–to do this does not mean you are innocent.

To manage costs, sellers rarely touch the merchandise. Instead, they rely on distributors to ship products into Amazon’s warehouses, where the e-retailer handles the sorting, packing and preparing of items for delivery through a popular program known as Fulfillment by Amazon, or FBA.

And like we’ve always preached, when you do this, you have no leg to stand on when Amazon or Buyers accuse you of selling counterfeit, INAD, or stolen products.

If it was so easy, everyone would be doing it.
But a few of us are still ethical.

“They said they weren’t stolen goods, but I never looked into their supply chain,” Ngo said, regarding his conversations with the suppliers. “I didn’t want to jeopardize the existing relationship.”

Boo friggin’ hoo. #complicit

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Frank said Amazon didn’t tell him which of his legions of products were allegedly stolen or offer any details that could help him track down the offenders.

Because you should know your suppliers. And if you have too many to keep track of, then you need to hire more people to do that job. I mean this is very very simple.

However, unraveling where the goods came from can be challenging, as it’s common for resold items to be bought and sold by several parties before being purchased by a merchant and listed on Amazon.

No it’s not common when purchasing from legitimate wholesale brand authorized sources.

Beyond providing Amazon with receipts

Typo, “Invoices”

“It’s been devastating to us, truthfully,” said Ricky Sala, who co-owns Oregon Prep Center, which launches and operates Amazon businesses for other companies. “We’re terrified to buy any wholesale products for customers right now because we don’t know what’s stolen, what’s not stolen, or what Amazon is going to say is stolen, even if it’s not stolen.”

Because you don’t know how to properly source. This is not Amazon’s fault.

Several of the accounts Sala oversees were suspended in recent months, which has cost his business some clients.

Ahhh, so your a “prep” center and a VA!

Several sellers told CNBC that the process of sourcing inventory changed during the Covid pandemic. Because of travel restrictions, they were unable to to meet prospective suppliers at trade shows or at their warehouses, so they would connect over social networks such as Instagram and Facebook, where they resorted to getting virtual tours of inventory.

Bull. They never met with suppliers.

The merchant, who asked to remain anonymous, paid over half a million dollars for pallets of air fryers, food processors, and espresso machines, according to invoices and bank statements reviewed by CNBC.
The documents showed that several of the suppliers claimed to have purchased the items directly from brands or liquidators. The Miami merchant said the suppliers offered the goods at “regular wholesale” prices.

AKA all liquidators or no-name brands

Several sellers said they reached out to the attorney general’s office in Amazon’s home state of Washington to raise awareness about what was happening.

So let me get this straight, the sellers, who are selling grey market and/or stolen goods wanted the AG to know what is happening. GOT IT!

At least three sellers purchased computer monitors, air fryers and other goods from Ngo Wholesale Distributors, also known as Ngo Trading Co.,

Tien Ngo, the company’s owner, told CNBC in an interview that he has purchased products from other southern California suppliers, including a company named Stride Trading, which is based outside of Los Angeles.

THIS IS NOT HOW WHOLESALE WORKS!

CNBC reached out to Sobrie, the owner of KZ, numerous times by phone and text at numbers we found for him in California, Florida and New Jersey. He didn’t respond.

Sobrie is well known in Amazon reseller circles. He’s been profiled for his success selling wholesale goods on the site and can be seen in Instagram posts posing in luxury vehicles and sharing e-commerce business advice.

Sobrie now runs a new wholesale company in New Jersey, KN Trading LLC, according to business records filed in the state. Its Telegram channel, which has over 1,100 subscribers, buzzes with new deals almost daily.

One business failed, and being sued, and suing, so he runs across the country from CA to NJ to open a new scam business. If he was as loaded with luxury items as he says he is, he wouldn’t have run. But these are the GURU’s people live by!

In the group chat, they check in with each other almost daily, swapping tips for their appeal interviews, looking for any way to increase their chances of getting their accounts back.
One of them wrote in a recent message, “I’m praying we all get great news very soon and this will be a story that ended well.”

Maybe, I don’t know, get a lawyer and sue your suppliers. Pray if you must, but action is needed.

Bottom line, not a tear from my eyes. All the suspended sellers were shady supplier wise and does not matter if they knew it or not.

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“They said they weren’t stolen goods, but I never looked into their supply chain,” Ngo said, regarding his conversations with the suppliers.

OK, I’m curious. How many of YOU have ever had a conversation with your suppliers about whether their goods were stolen? Show of hands? Anyone?? :roll_eyes:

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I mean I mostly buy from my brands directly (international, but smaller brands), or from one of a SMALL handful of distributors that are old as heck, and are all well established. My market is niche and I understand that, but come on! Buying Dyson from a distributor that sends out notices via telegram is a giant red flag

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Tried to have the conversation, but goodwill wouldn’t give me the time of day.

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Thumbs-up-sasquatch

Uh, yes. Also, if their goods used slave labor, came from DPRK, Islamic Republic of Iran, Myanmar, etc. You can go to prison for a very long time for selling governments stuff like that.

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Nope, I’ve never asked Lowes, Home Depot, Richelieu Hardware, Rockler, Brown & Pratt etc if the lumber, hardware, glue, stain, polyurethane, cardboard, and bubble wrap they are selling me is hot.

I guess I should inquire.

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I am shocked the article did not bring up the First Sale Doctrine, you know like every clown on the NSFE and OSFE.

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Kind of conicidental but on Reddit there was an advertisement for “legit Amazon accounts for sale”

This company sets up Amazon accounts goes through the video interview then sells them. They even recommend buying 20 in case one gets suspended.

Amazon wonders why they have issues.

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I was on upwork the other day and saw somebody posting ads that would pay you to review their item. The scammers do get creative don’t they…

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There was a post on the NSFE a few days ago that was advertising it. Featured post.

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https://sellersasksellers.com/t/deactivated-for-nothing-totally-relient-on-amazon-for-my-income/1537?u=papy

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There are a number of these 3Party sites; some sell them in packages i.e. 3 Accounts for $75,000 depending on the age of the account and reviews.

The one that was mentioned on the forum includes:
(passport/ID and bank statement included) - sounds like fraud to me.

Screenshot 2023-07-05 3.12.25 PM

The hope was that this mass re-verification would weed these secondhand accounts out but if Amazon has no safeguards in place and sellers can just go in and change the Legal Entity without having to submit proof that they are the original owner of the Account nothing is going to change.

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We have been debating making employees sign a memo stating they will not leave reviews for items purchased on Amazon in the categories we sell in. The employees who get to work from home have a no Amazon review understanding.

Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean someone is not watching you.

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