I have been an on-line bidder and purchaser of surplus through Government Liquidation's website. On or about August 23, 2005, I bid on and won Lot # XXXX contained in Sale # XXXX. It was (18) pallets of ADP equipment and office supplies that were shrink-wrapped and in tri-wall containers. In the manifest supplied on-line it stated that #104 was a Sharp Copier S260, acquired value $5000.00 in A4 condition. After picking up the items, which filled a 24 ft rental truck from end to end and top to bottom, I brought the cargo back and unloaded it into my storage area. The Sharp Copier was not among the items I picked up.
I contacted GL's representative at the DRMO in Columbus, Ohio to see if we had left a pallet behind. I was told that they could not find the copier there and that I should send an email to Customer Service at GL, which I did. GL's Customer Service advised me that I should not have based my bidding on the manifest supplied by the military, only by what was stated by GL in their boxed listing on the web page, not the manifest. In other words I was wrong and out of luck for not tearing apart and inspecting the (18) shrink-wrapped pallets prior to leaving Columbus.
I bit the bullet on that one. I would know better next time. On or about October 30, 2005, I bid on another auction held by GL, sale # XXXX, lot # XXXX. The auction was for (5) Panasonic Tough Book, Pentium III Laptop Computers. I won the auction for $700.00. When I received the five laptops, I checked them over and determined through the serial numbers that only (1) laptop was a Pentium III, the other (4) were Pentium II. I immediately sent an email to GL's Customer Service. About three weeks later I received a telephone call from Steve Weiss asking for further information. I supplied him with the serial number information; he informed me that it would now go to management for a final decision.
I did not hear from anyone for two and a half months. I then contacted GL's Customer Service and spoke with Ms. Lugo; who informed me that she could find no record of my complaint anywhere in the system. Ms. Lugo then stated that she would check further and get back to me via email. That was the last I heard from her.
I waited another two weeks for a determination and still no contact. I finally sent an email to GL's Customer Service advising them that I felt that I had been defrauded and was filing a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center. That brought a response from Customer Service. Two days later I received an email stating the following:
Thank you for your email. Once again your claim concerning 1611 lot 205 has been reviewed by management.
Based upon all related research in this matter; we cannot determine a verifiable cause for refund. Please keep in mind that, per our Terms and Conditions, Government Liquidation (GL) sells merchandise on an "as is, where is" basis and GL neither assumes responsibility nor makes any warranties regarding the sale's contents. It shall be the Buyer's responsibility to verify information and item's description, including but not limited to, product condition, estimated weight, count, measure or other factors that determine the bid price.
Additionally, the buyers purchase of, or placement of a bid, on the property constitutes acceptance of the property as is and in a used condition. "Acceptance" as used here also means that by the purchase of the property, the buyer will be deemed to have physically examined the property in person. All bids placed in the absence of a physical examination are done so at the buyers own risk.
Finally, any right to recourse by the buyer is waived after removal has taken place, verified by the signature of the buyer or their authorized agent on the Government Liquidation paid in full invoice.
Government Liquidation, LLC
15051 N. Kierland Blvd 3rd Floor
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
I find this totally unacceptable! Tell me Sir, how many bidders flew to Reno, Nevada to examine the laptops that were as described Pentium III's wrapped and ready for shipment? The contract and terms expressed by GL are ludicrous and totally one sided and self-serving. In the context of my dealings with GL, the verbiage has been manipulated to GL's financial advantage. I find it amusing that GL even bothers to refer to Customer Service, as a service. I am prepared to fight this by any and all means at my disposal. I plan to file complaints with the FTC as well as the SEC and the DRMO.
It is not my ambition to create problems for your organization, or to interfere with your operations. I believe it is necessary to speak the truth openly and let the chips fall where they may. All I wanted was to be treated fairly. I believe that public discussion via the Internet will serve to uncover other injustices and unfair practices by GL and its partner DRMO.