The AFL says it is investigating former player agent Ricky Nixon over allegations of counterfeit signatures.
According to The Age, the investigation comes after Nixon allegedly sold footballs that were said to include autographs from the current Melbourne Demons playing group, who last month were crowned premiers following their win over the Western Bulldogs.
It’s understood the items were advertised on Nixon’s Facebook page.
The Age says it spoke to four fans who purchased the items, in which they claim the balls were advertised for $575 each plus $20 postage.
Authenticity issues were raised when fans noticed that certain players allegedly had the wrong playing number attached to their signature.
In the report, it’s claimed a private correspondence from a Melbourne player to a supporter confirmed to them that the individual had not signed the piece of memorabilia purchased.
The AFL released a statement tonight regarding the matter.
“The AFL has been made aware of concerns [about] footballs with allegedly counterfeit signatures being sold and is currently investigating the matter and has requested Mr Nixon immediately cease any further sales,” an AFL spokesperson said.
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“The AFL reminds all fans to only purchase merchandise through AFL authorised sellers, including directly from clubs, the AFL store or officialmemorabilia.com.au.”
The Demons also issued a statement saying the club “has been made aware of the alleged sales of illegitimate 2021 premiership memorabilia”.
“The club has reported the matter to the AFL legal and licensing department, who are investigating the matter.
“For anyone wishing to purchase official and genuine 2021 premiership memorabilia the club advises to do so via this link: officialmemorabilia.com.au.“
Nixon, 58, a former Carlton, St Kilda and Hawthorn player, has a well-documented history in the game.
At his peak, Nixon’s agency Flying Start was home to some of the AFL’s biggest names including Wayne Carey, Gary Ablett Sr, Jason Dunstall and Tony Lockett.
Nixon’s empire came crashing down in 2011 following a leaked video scandal involving a schoolgirl.