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Topic: Hank Lee has done right by me
Message: Posted by: Dazzling Derek (Apr 3, 2011 08:39PM)
You always tend to hear about the bad things that happen to people when making a purchase but not so much about the good things. I am new here to the forum and just thought that I would share a story about my recent purchase.

I reside in MA and have been searching for a brick and mortar store to do business with. Although I have found many online shops and can research the effect/gimmick online its nice to go in somewhere and actually talk to a human face to face. Up until last week I never even knew about Hank Lee's store. I took the hour drive and was pleasantly surprised by the customer service.

Although the retail store part was quite small they had a lot of products and information there for me. I made my purchase and walked out completely satisfied. When I got home I started practicing some of my new products and packed up for the next days performance. Unfortunately one of the gimmicks I purchased had a defect. It was no fault of Hank Lee's it was a manufacturer defect. (I should have prepped the gimmick the day before but waited till the last minute)

I sent them an email about what had happened and they responded the next day. They sent me a new product without even asking for the old one back first at no charge and simply told me to bring it back on my next trip up to visit.

Really cool guys and great customer service. They have earned my business and loyalty.
Message: Posted by: David Garrity (Apr 6, 2011 08:19PM)
Bob and Steve over there at Hank's are just terrific to work with!!!!
Message: Posted by: David Thiel (Apr 6, 2011 08:40PM)
That's a great story! Thank you for sharing it.

Message: Posted by: Dougini (Apr 8, 2011 12:27PM)
Thank you Derek! I am also pleased to hear good news regarding Hank Lee's! :)

Message: Posted by: vdeangelis (Oct 18, 2011 01:23PM)
Hank's is a nice shop but if you are looking for another really good magic shop in Mass., check out Diamonds Magic in Peabody. Eddie, the owner is terrific and couldn't be more conscientious or pleasant to work with. They are a terrifically current and well supplied place to shop as well.
Message: Posted by: LoyaLover (Jul 16, 2012 06:16AM)
I beg to differ. I've never heard bad stuff about Hank Lee untill I made an order recently.

It has been a month by now, and the items has yet to arrive.

In addition to that, they stop replying my email once payment has been made.

These are the issues

1) The bill came and there were foregin charges that ARE NOT INCLUDED IN THE INVOICE.
2) Items have still not arrived after A MONTH
3) They CLAIM that they would do a refund because the father's day discount option wasn't working.
4) ZERO replies since payment has been made.
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Jul 21, 2012 12:49PM)
I think the difference is, Derek actually visited Hank Lee's in Medford, right Derek? You won't usually have a problem doing that. You can find out right then if he has in stock what you want. Mail order, I would avoid like the plague. For that, there's Penguin.

Just sayin'...

Message: Posted by: Munseys_Magic (Jul 23, 2012 10:48AM)
Any update on Hank Lee? His sentencing was set for 7/20, but I can't find info about it anywhere.
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Jul 27, 2012 12:50AM)
Hank SENTENCED? Wow. Going to jail? Somehow I cannot imagine that. You have to know (or have known) Hank, to see how unbelieveable that is! I just wish he could have done the right thing. I seem to be repeating myself, so forgive me guys...he used to be my #1 source for magic! He even (indirectly) introduced me to Walter B. Gibson!

"Gibby" and I were friends for years, and he used to send me stuff from his Nashua N.H. shop. Both of us used Hank Lee exclusivley! OMG!!

I just found out what the deal is! I had no idea! I don't know how long the site for this will be up, so I'll paste the text here (from medfordpatch.com):

[b]The owner of a magic store in Medford is charged with credit card fraud and making false statements to authorties after he tried to pull off a $500,000 trick on one of his customers, according to court filings.

Harry P. Levy, the owner of Hank Lee's Magic Factory, admitted he made 134 false transactions between 2009 to 2011 on a customer's American Express card totaling $561,927, according to a stipulation of facts signed by Levy and prosecutors. The document was filed in Federal Court in Boston Friday.

The store's website was still operational as of Friday evening.

Levy, a Lexington resident, regularly lied to investigators as they looked into the credit card charges last year, the filing said. He also claimed other people were defrauding the victim, the filing said.

The victim was a Texas man who ordered regularly online from the Magic Factory, typically using his PayPal account, according to a U.S. Attorney press release. But in 2009, he made a transaction with his American Express card by entering his account information in the store's website, according to prosecutors.

One of the victim's assistants spotted the unauthorized charges while reviewing his finances in May 2011, according to court documents. The victim checked his account with the Magic Factory, but only his legitimate purchases appeared, court documents said.

Levy told the victim the unauthorized charges paid for foreign orders and showed him invoices with Vietnam shipping addresses, according to the filing. But those invoices were false.

"In fact, the charges had been made by (Levy) personally," the filing said. "They had not been made in response to foreign orders."

Even the items the victim legitimately ordered with his credit card were never received, according to the filing.

When federal investigators sat down with Levy in September 2011, he blamed the fraud on other people defrauding the victim, and the victim himself, according to the filing.

"(He) didn't look at his American Express bill for more than two years," Levy told investigators. "People were using his cards."

He also claimed he shipped orders submitted by the victim all over the world, prosecutors said. Levy told investigators he continued to take the orders, but eventually stopped shipping them because he "thought something was up," according to the court filing.

Levy was ordered to provide investigators with files related to the charges, but he gave them logs that were "not comprehendable by a human," the filing said, and did not provide any specific information.

Levy also falsely told investigators he wrote to the victim to tell him someone was using his credit card, prosecutors allege.

After several more interviews and a visit to his store, investigators obtained a search warrant for the Magic Factory and found files that showed Levy falsified invoices, the filing said.

Levy has agreed to plead guilty to credit card fraud and making false statements, and in exchange prosecutors won't charge him with wire fraud or aggravated identity theft, according to a plea agreement. Levy faces a total of up to 20 years in prison on the charges.

Prosecutors will seek a sentence at the "low end of sentencing guidelines," and to have Levy ordered to pay resititution to the victim, according to the plea agreement.

No further court dates for Levy have been set, according to a federal court online docket.[/b]

Oh...man. This makes me physically ill. Was it alcohol? Drugs? WTF? I cannot imagine it's the same guy I used to visit in Boston!

Well...this convinces me beyond a shadow of a doubt. 20 years...that's a life sentence for Hank! :(

Message: Posted by: Munseys_Magic (Jul 27, 2012 01:14PM)
According to Hank himself, his sentencing was moved (by the prosecution) from 7/20/12 to 9/6/12.
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Aug 29, 2012 08:50PM)
So, September sixth is fast approaching...
Message: Posted by: J M Talbot (Aug 31, 2012 03:05PM)
He has announced that they have sold the house in an effort to downsize... not sure if it is related.
Message: Posted by: Illuminate . White Label (Sep 7, 2012 01:59PM)
Rabbit out of Hat...

Hank Lee will be put away for some time...

Check out his recent blog post for his comments.
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Sep 7, 2012 08:12PM)
Message: Posted by: kennewhitson (Sep 9, 2012 09:40PM)
Hank got 2 yrs and has to pay $560,000. Unfortunately the folks a t the factory continue the same practices that got them in this situation. Sad, very sad.
Message: Posted by: Munseys_Magic (Jun 5, 2013 01:35PM)
Was there ever an article published that said Hank got two years? The "Hank Lee" sign is still hanging outside his warehouse.
Message: Posted by: Munseys_Magic (Jun 5, 2013 01:37PM)
Sorry. I just found it: http://medford.patch.com/articles/magic-factory-owner-sentenced-to-two-years-in-prison-for-credit-card-fraud
Message: Posted by: Dougini (Jul 21, 2013 10:33AM)
On 2012-07-27 01:50, Dougini wrote:
...he used to be my #1 source for magic! He even (indirectly) introduced me to Walter B. Gibson!

Sorry guys...my bad. That should be WENDALL Gibson, Walter's nephew. :)

Message: Posted by: mndude (Nov 12, 2013 09:51PM)
Has anyone talked to him how well he's surviving jail? Sure sucks this happened to him.
Message: Posted by: Michael_Wald (Apr 15, 2017 08:59PM)
I did business with Hank Lee for over 30 years. Over the years I spent thousands of dollars at this shop. My experiences with him and his staff were uniformly positive. I had no complaints whatsoever, at any point in time.