Hundreds of fake tickets to Gathering in circulation

Nelson Mail - 18 December 1999

The organisers of the New Year dance party on Takaka Hill, The Gathering, are warning partygoers that hundreds of fake tickets are in circulation.

Alison Green, publicity coordinator for The Gathering, said organisers had become aware of fake Gathering tickets, and were warning people that staff would not accept the false tickets at the entrance gates, even if they had been innocently bought.

She said they knew of two different types of forged tickets, and one looked particularly authentic, with an embossed G like the originals.

The other counnterfeit ticket does not have the embossed G and both fakes lack special security features.

Ms Green said the fake tickets had apparently originated from Auckland, and she believed there could be "hundreds" in circulation. It was believed the main point of sale for forgeries was on local radion stations where the forgers had offered them for sale on-air.

"If you have purchased a ticket to The Gathering 2000 in the past month, there is a possibility that the ticket may be a forgery," she said.

The police fraud squad had been asked to investigate.

Ms Green said all of the authentic 8000 tickets had sold out by the start of October. She said the only way to be sure of owning genuine tickets was if they had been bought from an official outlet, or from a trusted friend.

However, she said it was too late now for concerned ticket-holders to check their passes with organisers because The Gathering was only two weeks away.

"We do not have the resources to be able to refund your money, and at this stage it is not going to be feasible for us to check your tickets and get them back to you in time," Ms Green said.

"The best we can do, therefore, is to offer you the opportunity of buying a limited number of genuine tickets from us at $125."

Ms Green said if anybody arrived at the gate with a forged ticket - "which we will be able to spot" - they would not be allowed in and could be liable to prosecution.

She said there were no gate sales to The Gathering.

Dougal Bell, Nelson Mail 18 December 1999

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