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Old 07-30-2004, 10:37 AM   #1
Jim Sorrentino
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Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia, Aikido Shobukan Dojo
Location: Washington, DC
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 247
Sword for sale? Caveat emptor.

Greetings All,

I recently received an unsolicited e-mail from a Pawel Nowak, whose e-mail address is Mr. Nowak claimed to have an 18th-century katana for sale. When I asked him for more details, he sent me several photos, along with the following text:

I have found your address surfing on the Internet. The blade (Blade Length: 28.75 inches Nakago: 7.25 inches .7 mm thick 30 mm wide) I am talking about I have got from one man, Mr. Milakow from California. That was a few years ago. His grandfather was an American officer who served in the US Army during the WWII on Pacific. He was a POW and after the war, he got the sword from one of the Japanese officers. The sword has a WWII wear but the blade, according to the swordsman is from the first part of the XVIII century. If you look at the signs on the blade you will see I am wright. I have a Custom Declaration which prove the that is an ntique, genuine Japanese sword. The declaration shows the value of 750$.

I am not a collector. I am an archivist who has an interest in Maritime History. I live in Poland. I am just before my next research trip to Spain and I am looking for the additional funds. So, I could sell it for the fee of $400. If you think you could have any interest in such sword, please let me know. I could also send my ID Passport and references and credentials I have got in Spanish and English archives to show you that I am a honest man.

Even assuming that all is as Mr. Nowak says, I am not going to attempt to make this purchase. There are too many things that could go wrong.

It's also possible that this is a scam. After all, $400 for an 18th-century signed 29-inch blade in good condition is a great price --- maybe too good to be true.

Did anyone else receive this message? I will be happy to forward the pictures to anyone who is interested.

Jim Sorrentino
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