GIA Grading Article

(Below are excerpts from an article entitled "GIA Lab Shake-up Rattles Industry" in the November 16, 2005 issue of National Jeweler)

"While it continues to defend itself against litigation that it falsified diamond grading reports, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) announced last month that four employees at its New York gemological laboratory have been terminated, and Thomas C. Yonelunas, former head of the GIA laboratory, has resigned.

"The action was propted by a lawsuit ... which named GIA and Vivid Collection among four defendants, (and) claims GIA was paid by Vivid to "upgrade" the quality of the diamonds GIA graded.

"Chaim Even-Zohar (principal shareholder of Tacy Ltd. Diamond Industry Consultants) claims that the problem of grading report fraud runs deep, and goes beyond GIA. "We have written for months now that there seems evidence of sustained multi-year wrongdoing involving numerous individuals," he says.

"Even-Zohar and other sources say the individuals terminated from GIA held supervisory positions at the lab. The question remains as to whether these individuals and companies are isolated, or if they are just the tip of the iceberg.

"How many grading reports may be tainted is just one of the major questions stemming from the lawsuit and the GIA statement announcing the terminations at its New York laboratory."

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