The Texas-based company conducting the auction, Gaston & Sheehan Auctioneers, Inc., said it was another contractor for the Marshals Service that was responsible for authenticating the items in advance.
“This is out of the norm,” one the auction house’s executives, Bob Sheehan, said about the suspension of the sale. He said he didn’t know who or what first raised doubts about the guitar.
Bidding was heavy hours after the auction started for a framed poster dedicated to the 25th anniversary of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” album — and allegedly signed by the pop star himself. The highest bidder by Tuesday evening had offered $1,560 for it.
Jesse Jackson Jr., the 48-year-old son of civil rights leader the Rev. Jesse Jackson and a one-time golden boy of Democratic politics, was sentence last month to a 2½-year prison term for to scheming to spend campaign funds. The same judge imposed a yearlong sentence on his wife, Sandra.
The Marshals Service sells property seized or forfeited in criminal cases, the proceeds of which are often kicked back into law enforcement. It currently manages more than 23,000 assets worth around $2.4 billion, the agency says.