Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Help Me Howard: Fake Cologne
He thought he was buying a very nice, very famous men's cologne. When he got home and opened the box, he knew it was a fake, but when he tried to get his money back, the store said, "No refunds," so he did what you should do: call Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.
WSVN -- If you sit down for a TV interview in a red shirt and red pants, odds are you have style.
Wyman Gresham: "Hey listen, I'm naturally a big guy, and the only thing that picks me up is when I am looking decent."
To keep looking good, Wyman Gresham has his favorites ... one in particular.
Wyman Gresham: "Love Sean John. In fact, I just got a Sean John suit my wife just bought me. Really nice suit, and why not have the cologne to match it?"
Sean John's "Unforgivable" is that cologne.
Wyman Gresham: "Love it. It's mild, it's mellow, it's cool, and I just love the reaction from the wife."
A few weeks ago, he was at a Fort Lauderdale discount store when he saw this box of Sean John cologne for $55 dollars. He bought it. The next morning he opened the bottle.
Wyman Gresham: "And I was wondering who is playing with lighter fluid, and who's rubbing on the Ben Gay."
Wyman sprayed the cologne on and found out where that lighter fluid/Ben Gay odor was coming from.
Wyman Gresham: "Oh my. Smells terrible. It was a farce; it wasn't the real thing. Very disappointed."
Then Wyman looked closer. This authentic bottle of Sean John has the name engraved on the bottle, and this bottle from the discount store looks like the name was written on a piece of tape and stuck on the cologne.
Wyman Gresham: "If I run my finger across it I can just peel it right off. It's a fake."
Wyman went back to the discount store.
Wyman Gresham: "I said, 'Just give me a refund because the cologne isn't real.' He wasn't having it. He said their store policy is no refunds."
The store employee said they would give him another bottle of cologne, but no refund. Wyman wants nothing more to do with them. He just wants his $55 back.
Wyman Gresham: "I have a bottle of lighter fluid and Ben Gay which will come in handy on the Fourth of July, but not right now."
Well, Howard, odds are this cologne is not real, but can you get your money back from a store that says, no refunds?
Howard Finkelstein: "First of all, if a store has a policy of no refunds, it must be posted at the cash register. And regardless of that policy, if what they sold was fake, they have to return your money. It's that simple."
I then called the owner of The Beauty Exchange. He told me he doesn't sell fake perfumes and colognes. He then e-mailed, "We are not perfume experts, so the company that we buy from is responsible for anything that goes wrong."
At first the owner refused to give Wyman his money back, but later changed his mind and refunded the $55 dollars. I then spoke to Jeff Tweedy, the president of Sean John. He told me The Beauty Exchange was not one of their accounts, that the company only allows major stores like Macy's to sell its products. He then told me he wanted to thank Wyman for being a loyal customer. He is sending him a new suit, shoes, cologne and a bottle of perfume for Wyman's wife.
Wyman Gresham: "Thank you so much, Help Me Howard."
Wyman got his money back and several gifts from Sean John, a good excuse to dress up and go out.
Wyman Gresham: "I am going to take the wife out and celebrate. Being nice and having something good happen to us in return. It doesn't happen all the time, but when it does, it's awesome."
Good to see good things happen to good people. Thanks to Sean John, and by the way, the store owner says he didn't know the cologne was bad and blames they distributor. And they need to know, whoever makes a counterfeit product is committing a crime.
Feel like you have walked into a stinking mess? Ready to dab on a solution? Contact us. Nothing fake about us. We just do our best to leave you smelling like a rose.
With this Help Me Howard, I'm Patrick Fraser, 7News.
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Reporter: Patrick Fraser at firstname.lastname@example.org