The case was wide reaching and complex, but the John Rogers fraud saga was broken down into a 20-minute segment on CNBC’s American Greed this week. As part of the story, a show producer Interviewed Rogers by phone at the Arkansas federal prison where he’s serving a 12-year sentence.
- Rogers claims he forged Muhammad Ali’s signature 10,000 times on photographs and lithographs following the former champ’s death in June of 2016. Rogers was already under FBI investigation at the time and would soon be indicted.
- He had harsh words for former Mastro Auctions exec and former business associate Doug Allen who he says “ratted him out” by agreeing to cooperate with the FBI. Allen had already been indicted on fraud charges but the FBI was also looking to nail Rogers. “I said ‘you know what, this scumbag deserves to pay for this. I wired up against Doug. I made sure that son of a bitch got his sentence doubled. And I don’t regret it.”
- Rogers says a cocaine addiction made him feel “invincible” even after he was indicted. “It creates delusions of grandeur. It creates hubris. You feel bulletproof.”
- Some of the items Rogers owned were legitimate and plans are in the works to sell them through auction houses.
What isn’t clear is how many of the forged autographs and memorabilia items he created are now in the hands of collectors who think they have the real deal. While much of it was used as phony collateral to obtain millions in bank loans he never paid back, the show’s interviews with an FBI agent and U.S. attorney didn’t offer any insight on how much Rogers sold to the public.
Some of the fake autographs on new bats and baseballs were erased and the equipment recently given to youth baseball programs in Little Rock and Chicago.
If you missed it, you can watch the show here (you’ll have to select your TV provider).
Topps Limited is returning for 2018. The online exclusive is a boxed set of all 700 base cards from Series 1 and 2, printed on 24-point premium stock.
The set comes in a black box and is available on the Topps website for $99.99.
The 1/1 2018 Topps Luminaries Hit Kings Don Mattingly was pulled from a pack this week. That by itself isn’t big news considering the number of 1/1s in the product but this one might take the cake for where it was pulled.
Collector Tim Sutton ripped the pack at The Card Shop in Evansville, IN—just a few blocks from where Mattingly grew up and went to high school.
While Marlins fans may scratch their heads at the “Go Yankees!” inscription, the card is a sharp one and currently listed on eBay.