Obviously a mistake happened with Canderous gear level 7. You don't have to be a genius to know that stun guns, cuffs and furnaces are not supposed to be used pre gear level 8. This is the only character in the game and the fact that his level 8 is exactly the same is a clear indication that this was a mistake. The second scenario is that you guys decided to pull an experiment on the community for metrics and under the guise of a mistake you got data and feedback to see if you can pull this stunt on future characters.
Regardless of the reason, mistake or intentional, the decent thing to do is refund that gear to those who used it and restructure the level, or give every player who used the gear, a copy of those pieces and for those who haven't done it yet, make it so that once they reach gear level 7 it automatically fills up the slots.
I don't understand how a multi billion dollar company like EA and a multi million dollar company like CG could not have the decency to take such a tiny and insignificant hit, it's not like it is gear level 12 or 11 or something, it's 7.