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Luke Skywalker wants to save you from buying fake autographs
on Sunday, 17 January 2016. Posted in Autograph forgeries
by: Cox Media Group National Desk
"Star Wars" memorabilia is more valuable than ever. But with that rise comes a remarkable number of forged signatures.
HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 14: Actor Mark Hamill attends the Premiere of Walt Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm's "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" on December 14, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
To combat forgeries, Mark Hamill, one of the franchise's most recognizable stars, is teaming up with a California lawmaker to protect the celeb autograph market from fakes.
Hamill, who plays Luke Skywalker, replied to dozes of fans on Twitter in late December asking if their memorabilia was legit, pointing out plenty of fake items in the process.
Hamill was contacted by California state assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang, who was already working on a bill to crack down on celeb forgery.
"What inspired me to carry this bill is because I don't want to see any more kids who are being victimized for this particular issue," Chang told the Los Angeles Times.
If signed into law, the bill Chang and Hamill are backing would mandate all signed memorabilia sold in California come with a certificate of authenticity, as well as allow fans who purchased fakes to claim in court up to 10 times what they paid for a bogus item.
These protections are already available for sports memorabilia, an inconsistency Hamill and Chang aim to eliminate.
"The public is being swindled on a daily basis, and the numbers are huge," Hamill told the Los Angeles Times. "I just can't keep quiet when I see people I love being hurt."