Diamond fraud uncovered

As in the past, the SSEF is regularly asked by the Swiss police authorities to act as a gemmological adviser in criminal cases. Usually, these are fraud cases, involving undeclared or mislabeled gemstones or their imitations. In a recent case with about 20 stones submitted by the police, we not only found diamonds with incorrect grading labels

by Dr. M.S. Krzemnicki, first published in Facette 27 (June 2021)

Figure 1: The yellowish diamond on the right was fraudulently labeled as Top Wesselton (rare white+ or F after current CIBJO nomenclature). The diamond on the left is a CIBJO masterstone for an F colour (lowest possible F colour). Photo: SSEF.

As in the past, the SSEF is regularly asked by the Swiss police authorities to act as a gemmological adviser in criminal cases. Usually, these are fraud cases, involving undeclared or mislabeled gemstones or their imitations.
In a recent case with about 20 stones submitted by the police, we not only found diamonds with incorrect grading labels (Figure 1) and undisclosed fissure-fillings (Figure 2), but also cubic zirconia that was fraudulently mislabeled as diamond and sealed in a plastic card.

These examples unfortunately highlight the risk for consumers when buying diamonds without proper documentation by an internationally recognised laboratory.

Figure 2: Beautiful flash effect seen under microscope in this fissure-filled diamond, but not nice as it was not disclosed! Photo: SSEF.
Figure 3: Beware the seal: This is not a diamond but cubic zirconia! Photo: SSEF.

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