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12.1.22 – KMBC

Sail Away Wine says it discovered websites promoting selling certificates for the business it had no knowledge of.

A wine tasting business in North Kansas City is warning about a scam after someone presented a counterfeit gift certificate.

“We’ve been here for about a year and a half,” said Jay Hightower, of Sail Away Wine.

Sail Away Wine in North Kansas City features some of the best blends from around the world.

“We definitely try to promote a lot of the just around the regions,” Hightower said.

The business also offers gift cards and gift certificates. Last week, a customer showed up with one that turned out to be fake.

“It had a lot of our pictures that we had used before,” Hightower said.

He said the customer had won it in an auction. It had all the Sail Away logos, address and specific details, but it was fake.

“We found a couple of websites that were promoting selling certificates for us that we had no knowledge of them doing,” Hightower said.

It was $100 gift card that Hightower said they went ahead and accepted, but he said that things like this can really hurt a small business this time of year.

“We’re out of the product and the services and the labor cost as well,” Hightower said.

He said they started punching up websites and discovered many of the fake certificates circulating. The customer has been holding this one from that auction for more than a year.

“Definitely get a hold of the business that you’re getting the certificate for and find out if it’s a legitimate website, if they’re actually promoting the services for that company,” Hightower said.

Sail Away Wine said this is the first time it has received a counterfeit gift certificate, and it’s likely not the last.