Some watch bodies aren’t a wonderland for John Mayer.
The Grammy-winning singer and oft-touted watch connoisseur has sued timepiece dealer Bob Maron, alleging his Thousand Oaks, Calif., boutique sold him seven vintage Rolexes with counterfeit parts.
According to the suit, filed March 18 in Los Angeles superior court and posted online by The Hollywood Reporter, Mayer met Maron in 2007 and over the years bought $5 million in watches from him. “From time to time, defendant Maron advised plaintiff that certain watches were not authentic or were of uncertain authenticity, and accordingly, plaintiff did not buy them,” it adds.
In 2010, the suit says, Mayer sent one of the purchased Rolexes in to be serviced by the company and was told it was not authentic. Maron called this an error, and applied a credit to the musician’s account.
The following year, the legal papers continue, Rolex told Mayer that another one of the watches he purchased had a counterfeit bezel and dial, adding, “The addition of non-genuine parts to any Rolex renders it counterfeit as defined by Federal Law.” The company has since confirmed that seven of the timepieces sold to Mayer contain counterfeit parts, and when Mayer asked for refunds, the dealer declined, saying the watches were sold “as is,” the suit says.
Mayer’s complaint charges fraud, breach of oral contract, and negligent misrepresentation, and seeks a refund of the $656,000 Mayer paid for the seven watches, as well as legal fees.
Maron could not be reached for comment. But his lawyer told TMZ that the lawsuit was “legally and factually meritless,” adding his client “refuses to pay Mr. Mayer a cent to settle his frivolous claim, and will instead defeat him in court.”
Rolex legal counsel was unavailable for comment. But charges of selling so-called Frankenwatches did play a role in another recent lawsuit launched by the watchmaker. In 2012, it sued Melrose.com, then a leading watch e-tailer, charging some of its items carried counterfeit parts. At the time, the company’s owner told JCK: “If you put aftermarket rims on a Ford Mustang, it doesn’t mean it’s not a Ford Mustang.”
But the following year, a California federal court issued a final consent judgment in favor of Rolex, ordering Melrose.com shut down, and that its owner pay Rolex $8.5 million in damages.