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Jeweller swapped natural diamonds for man-made ones, police say

Douglas Wayne Gamble, 57, the former owner of Timeless Jeweler in Salem, Ore., has been charged with 11 counts of theft for allegedly failing to return customer items and replacing natural diamonds with lab-grown ones, according to a press release from the Salem Police Department.

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The release states that Gamble became a “person of interest” after 10 victims reported the loss of their money and property after contracting with Gamble to design, repair or consign pieces of jewellery. His store closed in October 2022 “without notifying customers or returning their property,” the police department said.

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In some cases, customers reported that lab-grown stones were sold to them as natural diamonds, or that diamond jewellery settings were replaced with synthetic stones,” it said. “Other customers reported never receiving items purchased or items left at the store for repair or other services.”

A conservative estimate of the total loss to Gamble’s customers is $250,000, according to police.

Gamble has been charged with five counts of grand larceny and six counts of first-degree theft.

According to the police department’s statement, “Detectives are asking anyone who has had similar incidents involving Gamble, either through his store or online, to file a police report by calling the police non-emergency line at 503-588-6123 (option 1)”.

According to LinkedIn, Gamble had owned the store since 2011. He was a director of Portland Wholesale Jewellery from 2009 to 2016. He could not be reached for comment.

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Alice
Alice
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