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Tuesday, January 19, 2010
John's Jewelry Gets 45 Day License Suspension
By H. Nelson Goodson
January 19, 2010
Milwaukee -On Tuesday, the Common Council Licenses Committee decided on a vote of 5-0 to suspend the John's Jewelry business license for a period of 45 days. The committee heard testimony from Police Officer Jeffrey Thiele from the 2nd Police District who said, that police discovered during a sting operation that "not only that the establishment was taking in jewelry in violation of the city code, but that it was also melting down jewelry before the 15-day waiting period that was established in the code had been completed."
Chon Sung Lee, owner of John's Jewelry said "that he accepted a piece of jewelry without documentation because he felt sorry for the seller." The seller told Lee "that he needed money" who happened to be Police Officer Christopher Greer, from the District 2, working undercover. Officer Greer told the committee, that he assisted the investigating officers as an undercover officer by selling jewelry items to the establishment. Greer says that he did not provide identification and did not complete all of the paperwork required by law when selling jewelry, according to Tuesday's testimony in the Licenses Committee.
The committee agreed to view the illegal video transaction between an employee from John's Jewelry and undercover Officer Greer in committee as evidence, and the video was also entered on file.
Only one resident of the South side testified in favor of the revocation. Jason Cleereman, of the 1000 block of W. Washington St., was in support of the John's Jewelry business license revocation.
Last Thursday, three South Side jewelers facing revocation to sell gems and precious metals voluntarily surrendered their business licenses. Reflections, Cash N Gold and Star Jewelry business owners decided to turned in licenses to the city's Licenses Committee, Alderman Jim Bohl, Chair confirmed.
The Milwaukee Common Council Licenses Committee was moving to revoke the licenses of four jewelers accused of buying jewelry and not asking for identification from sellers or keeping accurate records of buying off the street jewelry as state law and city ordinances require.
A two month police sting from Oct. to mid November found that Reflections Jewelry, 1306 W. Forest Home Ave., Cash N Gold, 1214 S. Cesar E. Chavez Dr., Star Jewelry, 1212 W. Lincoln Ave., and John's Jewelry, 1119 W. Historic Mitchell St. were buying jewelry from off street sellers and not filling out proper forms. Police review forms to determine, if jewelry bought was reported stolen.
Police confiscated over 1,200 items worth $75,000 and cited the stores involved with 85 citations totaling over $41,000 in fines.
Related article Internet link, Milwaukee police sting operation nets 1,200 items of stolen jewelry in the South side http://bit.ly/7xbgJW