Can't say I'm in the business of fencing goods, but if I was, eBay would be the backup plan if I couldn't move my wares face-to-face. That's not the case for eBay seller "salmanleitz047", who successfully auctioned a pilfered custom Canon lens for $US65,100 — about $84,700 Australian.
Sadly, even though the real owner, Daniel Zvereff, was informed of the auction by a friend while it was still in progress, the photographer was unable to do anything about, with eBay proving "unhelpful" when contacted.
The lens was taken from Zvereff while he was in Guadalajara, Mexico and had basically written it off when he found out about the illicit auction.
What's funny about it all is that the lens is, in no way, worth $US65,100. According to PetaPixel's Michael Zhang, its a $US2300 ($2995) Canon 50mm f/0.95 lens with around $US800 ($1041) of modifications so it fits (and is recognised by) a Leica mount.
So why the ridiculous price? It could be an attempt by good Samaritans to slow salmanleitz047 down:
Zvereff thinks it’s "absolutely possible" that the absurd price is the result of photographers doing whatever they can to prevent the auction from completing successfully, even if it means putting a price that they have no intention of paying.
Seems like the most logical explanation. Unfortunately, it's unlikely to help Zvereff get his lens back.