Seriously? Of course indulgences were sold -- under the guise of 'charitable contributions'. If you are told that a contribution to charity can reduce your sentence in jail, and that the charity that you're supposed to contribute to is owned, operated, and controlled by the warden, isn't that basically selling a reduced jail sentence?
Indulgences were sold for the construction of St. Peter's basilica. The church investigated, and downplayed the role of the priest at the top of the chain -- instead, those that played up the idea to the poor were blamed. Those involved were not 'counterfeiting' anything, they were just misrepresenting what was needed for an indulgence (a prayer was just as good as money). However, the idea of giving indulgences to rebuild the basilica certainly started at the top, and is 'selling' no matter how you look at it.