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12 Accused in $9M Diamond Fraud Case, and Other News From This Week




Here’s what’s happening in the world of jewelry.

Authorities say they’ve charged 12 men in connection with a $9 million diamond fraud scheme in New York. The men, who allegedly are Russian gang members, tricked wholesalers in the Diamond District by way of false references and cold checks, federal prosecutors say, according to the New York Post. Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Joon Kim was quoted saying, “The defendants allegedly took advantage of an industrywide system of credit and trust to obtain largely untraceable diamonds, and then, using various allegedly illegal schemes, refused to pay.” They’re charged with mail fraud and wire fraud and have been released on bail.

Mike Carter of Carter’s Fine Jewelers and Gifts in Rocky Mount, VA, is entering the local political arena, the Franklin News-Post reports. Carter, whose described by the newspaper as an “anti-pipeline activist,” is running for the role of Rocky Mount district supervisor. He’s quoted saying: ““I think the county needs to maybe have a businessperson’s perspective on county politics.”

Movado Group Inc. announced that its president, Ricardo Quintero, is departing. He’ll stay with the watch company through April 30, after which his responsibilities will be assumed by members of the senior management team. The change is part of a “streamlining” of the organization, according to a press release.


Thomas S. Fox Fine Jewelry Outlet in Grand Rapids, MI, is closing after 100 years in business, WOOD-TV reports. Decades ago the business had as many as 48 locations in several states, but now it’s down to one. Owner John Turrentine says he’s ready for a change and he’s going back to his previous career in building and real estate.

A new bill called the Main Street Cybersecurity Act has landed in the U.S. Senate, CNBC reports. If it passes, it will create resources and guidelines for small businesses seeking to prevent cyberattacks. Bill co-sponsor Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-WA, said: “By creating a simple, voluntary cybersecurity framework for small businesses, the Main Street Cybersecurity Act will help them protect their data.”




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The store was a landmark in Topeka, Kansas, but after 80 years in business, it was time for Briman’s Leading Jewelers to close up shop. Third generation jeweler and owner Rob Briman says the decision wasn’t easy, but the sale that followed was — all thanks to Wilkerson. Briman had decided a year prior to the summer 2020 sale that he wanted to retire. With a pandemic in full force, he had plenty of questions and concerns. “We had no real way to know if we were going to be successful or have a failure on our hands,” says Briman. “We didn’t know what to expect.” But with Wilkerson in charge, the experience was “fantastic” and now there’s plenty of time for relaxing and enjoying a more secure retirement. “I would recommend Wilkerson to any retailer considering a going-out-of-business sale,” says Briman. “They’ll help you reach your financial goal. Our experience was a tremendous success.”

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