The $1 Gold Bar

As Chinese fakes go, this is as outrageous as it gets.

A factory in Wenzhou has been pumping out fake gold bars carrying the insignia of Australia’s highly respected Perth Mint.

Like a knockoff Coach bag, the resemblance isn’t perfect… but the kicker is that the bars — surprise, surprise — aren’t made of gold. Or not much gold. “First, we did the silver plating, then the gold plating,” a worker told an undercover reporter from Australia’s Seven Network.

Gold at $1 an ounce!

The reporter paid A$300 for 300 bars. The real thing would have been worth A$510,000.

“If it looks like a deal that’s too good to refuse,” says the Perth Mint’s Ron Currie, “you should refuse it.”

Dave Gonigam