Karats Jewelers

Karats Jewelers

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Published: 22 March 2021

Posted by: Anonymous

Since I am now legally able to share with you my experience with Karats Jewelers (specifically, Akshay “Andy” Anand who calls himself the “owner” of this business), I feel I should probably do so as you don’t want to get wrapped up in the same crap I was. Short Version – My wife and I purchased a Jeff Cooper (very expensive designer) wedding band from Andy on August 28, 2008. We finally received the ring on December 22, 2008 (after being promised 6-8 weeks). However, the ring we received was actually a knock-off. Other professional jewelers believed Andy ripped me off by over $1,000 on a ring that he charged me $2,050. Jeff Cooper Designs found out about the fraud Andy committed and has sued him for an unspecified amount and pulled his line from Andy’s store. Loooooooong Version – My wife and I purchased a Jeff Cooper wedding band from Andy on August 28th, 2008. We actually just went in to look at rings, but he pressured us into buying that day by claiming the price of gold was going up within the next week. This was just one of many lies he told us. He promised us that the ring would be at his store within 6-8 weeks. After the eighth week rolled by, he left me a message on Facebook saying, “another couple weeks or so to get your ring in….not really pushing it…..” After a couple weeks, we didn’t receive any word from Andy so my wife called his shop to which he said the ring was delayed another week. THIS HAPPENED 7 TIMES. On several different occasions, my wife or myself would call Andy and he’d say that Jeff Cooper delayed the ring, it’ll be another week. He even went as far to say that Jeff Cooper needed to know the date of my wedding so he would know which jobs to put on the “back burner.” This claim was later verified as false by other authorized Jeff Cooper dealers and even Jeff Cooper’s son David. There was a separate time Andy claimed the ring did come in, but it came in wrong and needed to be sent back. Andy later promised that the ring would be in on Friday, December 19th, and if it wasn’t – he’d give my wife a free upgrade on the diamond in her engagement ring. “Just show up that day. The ring will be in,” Andy told me about 3 inches from my face (yes, uncomfortable!). Well, December 19th came, we went to the store, and he claimed he missed his UPS shipment that morning. If I wasn’t such a nice person, I should’ve just ended the order right here and gotten my money back. He gave my wife a free pair of Pandora silver earrings – these earrings were also fake as they turned her ears black. But, they were free so we really didn’t care. Anyway, back to the ring. On Saturday, Andy claimed that he went to UPS to pick up the shipment, but that they wouldn’t give it to him since it was insured for so much. Instead, they were required to ship it to Karats – since that was the name on the package (the guy has an excuse for everything!). The ring finally did arrive on Monday, December 22nd. After waiting nearly 4 months, we finally had the ring! I’ll admit, it looked great. Then came the day my brother’s fiance got to look at it. She liked it, but pointed out that Jeff Cooper rings have his name engraved on them (her engagement ring is a Jeff Cooper and has this engraving). The ring Andy gave me did not have Jeff Cooper’s name engraved on it. RED FLAG! So I checked Jeff Cooper’s web site for other authorized dealers in town, and Meierotto’s and Shane Co. both showed up. I took the ring to both stores. They both agreed that the ring was beautiful, but it was “very questionable” as to whether it was really Jeff Cooper’s work. Lichtenberg’s Fine Jewelry, another trustworthy, reputable jeweler in south Kansas City, also believed that the ring was not an authentic Jeff Cooper product. The worksmanship was very bad on Andy’s ring (the ring has a row of 20 tiny diamonds sitting in a channel. Behind this row on the underside of the ring are a bunch of tiny holes for the diamonds. Jeff Cooper’s work shows the holes to be evenly spaced and aligned perfectly. Andy’s ring had holes very unevenly spaced – some almost touching, some far apart – and whoever made it apparently didn’t understand the concept of alignment). Also, the ring didn’t even have Jeff Cooper’s name engraved in it (everything Jeff Cooper does has his name engraved unless YOU have it re-sized), and the 18K engraving was hardly readable – they actually couldn’t tell if it said 18K or 10K. If you look at a Jeff Cooper ring, the 18K is just as (or more) readable as the type you’re reading as they use laser engraving. Each of the companies suggested I go to Andy to verify it was authentic. They also believed that a fair retail value on the ring was no more than $1,000 if it wasn’t really Jeff Cooper (remember, he sold this to me for $2,050) as you pay quite the additional fee for Jeff Cooper’s work. So I was pretty PO’d at this point as $1,000+ is a fortune to me. I went to Andy for verification to which he was very offended that these other companies would question his integrity as a jeweler, and said that they’ll just throw him under the bus to make a sale. He also gave me quite the guilt trip for not going to him first (so he can cover his rear without other jewelers finding out, perhaps?). Another reason Meierotto’s told me this was not an authetic Jeff Cooper was because Andy did not give me a Jeff Cooper box for the ring. However, Andy claimed that Jeff Cooper did not give boxes. He actually went as far as to call Meierotto’s and a number of other jewelers to ask if their Jeff Cooper rings came with Jeff Cooper boxes. Each place said, “No, he doesn’t give us boxes.” So, I started to believe Andy now. He actually ended up ordering another ring from Jeff Cooper just for my peace of mind. I walked out of Andy’s store that night thinking everything was going to be worked out fine. Then, one week later, I received a call out of the blue from David Cooper – Jeff Cooper’s son and vice president of Jeff Cooper Designs. He had somehow been alerted about the situation, and he wanted me to show him a receipt from Andy for the ring specifyinig that the ring he sold me said “Jeff Cooper” on the receipt. He also wanted pictures of the ring. I obliged and received another phone call from David the next day. “I can tell you right now, this isn’t my work. My name’s not engraved, the 18K is stamped and not laser engraved, and he didn’t even use the right diamonds. If you can, please do not have any contact with Andy as I have to get my attorney involved.” Later that week, Andy started blowing my phone up and would leave psycho-ex-girlfriend-type messages like, “Brian, this is Andy. I’ve called you 4 times now and I’m wondering why you haven’t returned my calls! I really need to talk to you!” So I alerted my brother and his fiance about what was going on and to not get involved. Andy would then call my phone, and about 10 seconds later, I’d get a text from my brother saying, “Andy just tried to call.” After 30 minutes, I’d get a call from a blocked number. Ten seconds later, my brother would text, “I just got a blocked call.” After he finally got the hint that I wasn’t going to speak with him, he started calling my friends to have them talk to me for him. Andy actually told my friend that, yes, Jeff Cooper is suing him, but he had nothing to do with my order. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!? Mr. Anand had everything to do with every little detail of my order from day 1! He actually told my friend that it was an employee of his who took my order (yet my receipt specifically says “Andy” as the salesman), wrote it up, and was reponsible for getting the ring. He also said that he found out this employee got the ring locally (remember the UPS shipment part?) and was fired on the spot – so he had to order a replacement ring (remember where he ordered a second ring for my peace of mind?). He also gave this same friend a sob story saying, “I don’t understand…..I gave a discount, I didn’t charge him sales tax….” HE SOLD ME A FAKE RING! (at a Jeff Cooper price) So, I spoke to David Cooper who said Andy actually gave him that same “ex-employee” story. I apologize for being a snitch, but I had to let David Cooper know what really went on. Andy apparently didn’t remember the Facebook messages he sent to my brother and his fiance in regards to my ring where he specifically said, “When I sent the paperwork to Jeff Cooper, he needed to know the wedding date……..blah blah blah”. So I just basically had to play the waiting game and Jeff Cooper apparently reached a settlement with Andy. But apparently Andy wasn’t done with his games (I like to think of it as just flat-out stupidity). Apparently, the Coopers sent a settlement agreement to Andy who was supposed to take the appropriate action. However, the settlement agreement they received from Andy had been changed by Andy himself without any type of communication with them. I ended up getting the right ring just 3 days before my wedding. David Cooper did receive the “2nd” order from Andy, but he did not want to process it through him. So I had to buy the ring from a jeweler in Minnesota. The price for the ring (yes, a real Jeff Cooper) was $1,700. That’s still $350 cheaper than Andy’s price with a “friend discount”. Some food for thought. Look at his company’s web page – www.karats.us. Go to the section about his designers. Notice who the first “designer” is – his sister. This could explain why he tried to cover his rear by saying the fake ring was purchased locally (and, in reality, why it took 4 months to have shipped in). If you’re a member of his Karats Facebook group page, go to his note about Designer vs. Non-Designer. Ask him to answer his own question as it seems to implicate his own intentions. For those who don’t have Facebook access, he posted a note asking, “Would you rather have a ring that posses top quality, stones, and a brand name or a ring that doesn’t have a designer name but looks the same?” However, I can’t verify if this is still there or not, as he really let me have it by deleting me as his Facebook friend a month or so ago. How dare he! If any of you have purchased a Jeff Cooper ring from Andy and think it’s a fake (missing engraving is a big red flag), do not hesitate to message me and I can get you their e-mail address. If he has ripped you off, do not hesitate to post reviews up on sites like citysearch or yahoo to warn others. I will be doing so soon. I just hope they can delete the positive reviews he has written about himself (and whoever called him out on citysearch, good work!). I’m not trying to put Andy out of business (although it wouldn’t bother me a bit), but I don’t want any of you guys falling for the same crap I did. Who would actually do something like this to their customers, let alone their friends? If any of you want to share this with Andy, please go ahead! I have yet to get any type of apology. UPDATE!!! It recently has come to my attention that Mr. Akshay “Andy” Anand has responded to my experience by claiming I am “stretching the truth” and “taking the truth out of context.” Let me just say that what he has said is yet another lie to add to the already long list he has built up during this ordeal. I haven’t altered any facts or ommitted any details in any way, shape, or form. He also claims he tried to rectify the situation by trying to apologize to me “multiple times.” He did in fact call to apologize ONCE (which came after I started posting about this situation online, not after he and Jeff Cooper reached a settlement). While I do appreciate his apology, I don’t appreciate that he still tried to sling excuses my way by telling me I “needed to understand the situation he was in.” According to Andy, his “situation” was that he owed Jeff Cooper over $11,000 at the time I placed my order. 1) Aren’t you supposed to pay your bills? Andy marks his products up enough (in my case – charges designer cost for a knockoff), he should have more than enough to account for his vendor costs, apply some money towards his overhead, and then have money left over. 2) Aren’t you supposed to let your customers know if an item isn’t…..say….”available” or if a cheaper alternative is available? I WAS NEVER INFORMED OF ANY OF THIS! Not at any point prior to the “apology” I recently received. For all I know, this is yet another lie and way to cover his rear for being greedy (and thinking he could take advantage of someone with what he perceives as little jewelry knowledge) as David Cooper never said anything about this. If any of you reading are the “friends or business associates” who alerted him of what I have to say whether it be here or sites like Citysearch – thank you for letting him know what I put about him as he needs to face reality and accept the consequences of when he not only rips off customers but takes advantage of friends. I just ran across this on citysearch.com from another user in response to Andy’s “response” to me, that seems to sum Andy up perfectly: “You did nothing but lie throughout your entire response. You need help, man. You convince yourself that your own perception of a situation is correct, when in fact it’s far from reality. You’re a pathelogical liar, & you believe your own lies. You should maybe think twice about owning a high-end “jewelry” store, and should open a used car lot.” Rippedoffbykarats Kansas City, Kansas

U.S.A.

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