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Dispute with diamond dealer lands man in jail

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ATLANTA -

A local man put in a whole lot of effort to get the right, custom-made diamond ring for his girlfriend, but in the end he is the one who ended up with a real surprise. Victor Blevons ended up being arrested.

There is plenty of work that goes into a marriage proposal. You have to get the ring ready, and you have to plan on the day you'll pop the question.  But for Blevons, what he thought was a run-of-the mill business dispute ultimately landed him behind bars.   

"We set up the room with the flowers on the bed," said Blevons.

It was a fairytale plan. Blevons would whisk away his girlfriend Karen to New York and propose.

"She wanted me to surprise her with the ring," Blevons said.

So he got to work. He put a ring from a past relationship on Craig's List.  A Johns Creek jeweler bought the ring, and agreed to make a new one. The invoice showed the type of ring to be made, and with a diamond trade-in, Blevons paid him $2,900.  

When Blevons got it, he didn't like it and tried to return it.  That's when the fairytale started to sour.

"It didn't look the quality he thought it was going to be versus what we had spent on the diamond," said Karen Blevons.

Later, an appraiser backed up what they were saying. Notes say the diamonds are several grades lower than paid for.  Victor says one of the diamonds even fell out.

In an email, jeweler Evangelos Armiros offered some trade-in options, but not a refund. Victor disputed the sale on his credit cards.  American Express returned his $500 deposit.  Chase's investigation took about two months, and the jeweler got impatient and filed his own complaint with Johns Creek police.

"You cannot keep that man's property and not pay for it," said Johns Creek police Detective  B.K. Lyles.

On a taped phone call, Victor tells Lyles the credit card companies told him to keep the ring until the dispute was settled.  

"Well, the credit card company is going to end up getting you arrested then," said Lyles.

That's what happened.  Just days after the last credit card company agreed with him and before he could return the ring, a lot of Gwinnett police showed up to arrest him.

"Four police cars in the neighborhood over a credit card dispute," said Victor.

It took 58 hours to get him turned over to Johns Creek police to be charged with theft by conversion.  

A judge even wondered aloud why a transaction that happened in Gwinnett got him cuffed by Johns Creek police.  He says the judge told him he'd drop the whole thing, if Mr. Blevons would just return the ring to Mr. Armiros. But the jeweler, he says, now refuses to take the ring.

"It's not right. I'll fight it all the way. It's not right," said Victor.

A Fulton judge said he'd throw this case out if Mr. Blevons would meet with the diamond dealer and just return the ring by last Wednesday.  Victor says he tried but Evangelos Armiros said no, and that he plans to sue him.

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