Information and Reference of illegal stamps for Gambia according to U.P.U. Circular 308
On October 25, 2004 the postal administration for the Gambia represented by K.J.S. McKeown (Director of Markets) posted to the Universal Postal Union a
circular warning of the discovery of a massive amount of illegal stamps created with their country name that are on the market. The circular is
number 308. You can view the circular in its entirety in the PDF file I have linked here.
The circular describes numerous sets that were found to be on the market in 2004. the issues described are all dated in 2003. Many
more have and are being produced since that time. Most of the illegal stamps described in this circular are still on the market today. They are available through
private stamp dealers and their websites. They are available on eBay and Delcampe. They are everywhere! These illegal issues are fabrication
of stamps that have never had any postal validity in Gambia and have been denounced as fraudulent. They were and are created by certain greedy,
unethical and immoral stamp dealers. Any stamp seller out there that offers these "stamps" either does not know they are illegal stamps
or is deceitful and they should be avoided at all costs. The deceitful ones prey upon unknowing collectors new and old. They prey upon topical
collectors mostly because the majority do not have the knowledge that they are worthless in the stamp market. Some are quite obvious because
they have hundreds of lots available on eBay and other public auction venues.
For years now there has been arguments as to whether these issues should be imaged for public viewing. The against argument being that collectors
that see images of them will want them for their collections. We can see by the availability on the market and the sales generated that this
argument has not worked. By only relying on descriptions of the illegal stamps through the UPU circulars the majority of collectors don't even
know what they are.
I am a firm advocate against illegal stamps and the creators of them and the sellers of them. Perspective buyers of them need more than UPU
circulars to be alerted to the problem. They need to see them and be able to recognize them when they are searching for stamps to buy on the
internet or at stamp shows or buying from local dealers.
Because I am independent and run a site that is very public for collectors, I have decided that it is time for someone to display images of
these illegal issues that have and are being reported to the UPU. The countries that are being victimized by these fraudulent printers need
help and the UPU is not enough. It is up to you and me to get the word out and to let everyone know and understand about them since auction
venues, stamp societies and catalogs seem to want to ignore the problem. Some who sell these fakes are large volume stamp dealers with supposed
impeccable reputations. Some are in high positions in the stamp societies and in the auction venues. They in turn are avoiding the very problem
by allowing these kind of sellers to peddle this junk because they also sell legitimate stamps on a large scale. The only way to stop the flow
is to hit them where it hurts.
If they are selling this junk then avoid them! Even if they have legitimate stamps for sale. Buy from sellers
that do not have these in their offerings. If you are buying legitimate stamps from them you are still supporting the illegal stamp trade
because they are supporting it. Tell them that you do not want to buy from them because they sell illegal stamps.
There is no excuse to make them available to anyone.
The following images are of illegal stamps produced for Gambia. Please remember that the producers of these illegals are not only greedy,
they are crude and sometimes disgusting which is the nature of these people.
One item to look for in illegal stamps of Gambia is that almost all legitimate Gambia stamps are titled "The Gambia", not "Gambia".
It appears that the Gambia is no longer on the WNS database. Possibly because of political turmoil. You should therefore
use a respectable catalog like Scott or Stanley Gibbons. Do not listen to these dealers trying to convince you they are something
other than illegal stamps.
Here we go!
All imaged illegals are in the order listed in UPU Circular 308 page 2 through 3.
Many of the following illegal stamps can be found as imperforates and as color proof sets as well. Some exist on fake First Day Covers too.
Most times now (2016) the souvenir sheet sets and sheetlet sets are sold individually. Many times the stamps have been removed from the sheetlets
and souvenir sheets. All of these "tactics" are used to avoid detection by UPU circular descriptions.
Sellers that call these "private", "locals", "cinderellas", "unauthorized" are deceiving you. They are illegal stamps produced by a stamp dealer
that is bent on ripping you off! Some sellers state "we offer them because they are on the market". Well how about you use a different dealer
because that seller is "on the market"? If the stamp societies, auction sites and all other venues kicked these sellers off of their sites
then they would have to comply or lose their ability to sell anything.
The following images are free for the use of all to use to alert the public to them. If anyone wants to make a public list of users on eBay, Delcampe
and elsewhere who are selling these issues....fine by me since the UPU, PWMO and others appear to have given up or have not been updated in years.
If you have purchased any of these stamps from a dealer or if that dealer offers them, you should avoid that dealer! You will
only be supporting illegal stamp makers who are only ripping you off.
2003 Dinosaurs (Prehistoric World) with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheet of 2
Noting the canceled ones are fake cancels.
2003 Birds of Prey with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheetlet of 6
2003 Chinese New Year Monkeys Souvenir Sheet of 2
2003 Oceans Marine Life Fish with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheetlet of 9
2003 Polar Birds Penguins with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheet of 3
Also sold as imperforate.
2003 Orchids with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheetlet of 6
2003 Looney Tunes 75th Birthday of Mickey Mouse Souvenir Sheet of 2
2003 Games and Sports Tiger Woods Souvenir Sheet of 2
2003 Pope John Paul II with Red Cross Logo Souvenir Sheet of 4
2003 Pope John Paul II Gold Souvenir Sheetlet of 4
2003 New Cinema Actresses Souvenir Sheetlet of 6
2003 Nude Art Souvenir Sheet of 4
2003 Vincent van Gogh Souvenir Sheetlet of 6
2003 Great Composers Souvenir Sheet of 4
2003 Lighthouses with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheet of 4
2003 Monuments of Egypt Pyramids Souvenir Sheetlet of 6
2003 Aircraft with Rotary Logo Souvenir Sheet of 4
2003 Remember September 11th Fire Engines Souvenir Sheetlet of 6
2003 Classic Actresses Movie Stars Souvenir Sheet of 4
2003 Pin-up Art Earl Moran Souvenir Sheet of 4
This is the end of the UPU Circular 308 for Gambia. It shows us the same producer of these illegal issues is producing
illegal stamps in the name of many countries. It continues to this day and nobody has yet come forward to expose the producers.
References taken from:
U.P.U. Circular No. 308
Major Stamp Catalogs