MLM Detective POSTS

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D9 Clube raided by police in Brazil

Despite promises to continue running the scam on Facebook, authorities are closing in on D9 Clube in Brazil.Following a six month investigation, Brazilian police launched operation Giza on Thursday morning.Operation Giza saw search warrants issued and raids conducted at ten different locations.So far a boat, computer server, Harley Davidson motorcycle, drone and camera have been seized.Local news reports are claiming one of the D9 Clube properties raided belonged to Marcos Franca, a top earner in the $3 billion dollar TelexFree Ponzi scheme.Authorities in the Brazilian state of Bahia state D9 Clube was founded in Itabuna, ‘but has since expanded into other…

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Empower Network is bankrupt, David Wood explains all?

When David Wood last appeared in public, the situation appeared rather grim.Obviously under the influence of something, Wood appeared disheveled and suffering from an acute case of “God complex”.That was early June. Less than a fortnight later Wood’s brother William walked out and since then things have been quiet.With the future of Empower Network hanging in the balance, today Wood appeared in a new video to explain what exactly went down.Turns out it was some “plant medicine” and amphetamines…Wood’s new video appeared yesterday on his “Empower Network” Facebook page. A few weeks back public access to the profile had been revoked.In…

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Spey Invest Review: Fake everything cryptocurrency trading Ponzi

Spey Invest claim it wasset up in 2014 as the pilot online project of trading business by a group of enthusiasts headed by Daniil Solopov.Despite the relatively young age of the Company, SPEY INVEST LTD has become well known to field-specific experts in Great Britain and also abroad as soon as one and a half years of its activity.Two things;First is that you probably don’t know anyone who has ever heard of Spey Invest. In fact, outside of the company’s own website, affiliate marketing and listings on HYIP scam sites, there is no independent third-party information about Spey Invest available.The second is…

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Hyten Global Review: HopRocket travel expands into nutrition

According to a FAQ published on the Hyten Global website, the company is a “transition” from HopRocket.From what I’ve been able to ascertain, the transition from HopRocket to Hyten Global took place on or around December, 2016.The Hyten Global website domain (“hytenglobal.com”) was privately registered on October 14th, 2016.HopRocket itself was launched in 2015 as a spinoff of the failed JM Ocean Avenue venture.Whereas HopRocket provided no information about company ownership on its website, Hyten Global names Tim Richerson (CEO), Tuffy Baum (President) and David Price (International President) as co-founders of the company.Conspicuously absent is Fred Ninow, one of the key…

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Norwegian Gaming Board suspects Lyoness is a pyramid scheme

Citing the ongoing receival of ‘many tips and questions from the public asking if Lyoness is a pyramid scheme‘, the Norwegian Gaming Board has provided an update on their current investigation.Following their first investigation into Lyoness in 2013 the Gaming Board concluded that, while they might have once operated as one, Lyoness’ current business model didn’t classify them as a pyramid scheme.Unfortunately it was later revealed the Gaming Board’s decision was primarily based on marketing material Lyoness had provided.This didn’t address the root of the problem (that Lyoness operates as a pyramid scheme), and so the Gaming Board continued to receive complaints and…

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VictoriaBank’s Zeek Rewards Ponzi funds to remain frozen

A decision to grant VictoriaBank a Motion to Dismiss back in May potentially placed $13.1 million dollars of stolen Zeek Rewards investor funds on the line.While the court granted VictoriaBank a dismissal, it maintained a freeze order pending conclusion of the Receiver’s anticipated appeal.The Receiver did indeed file an appeal, which will and slowly play out and reexamine the case in the Fourth Circuit.In the meantime VictoriaBank filed a motion seeking to vacate the original freeze order, granting them access to the disputed Ponzi funds.The Receiver filed a response in opposition and a decision on the matter was made on July…

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Final Judgment sought in SEC vs. James Merrill (TelexFree)

With the criminal side of TelexFree wrapped up (for now), the SEC’s civil proceedings have resumed.Back in September, 2014, the DOJ were granted a stay on all civil proceedings involving TelexFree, pending the outcome of their criminal case.With Merrill sentenced to six years in prison back in March, the SEC are now looking to close their civil case against him.In a July 21st consent filing, the SEC and Merrill (right) have reached an agreement regarding Final Judgment.As per the agreement, Merrill is prohibited fromcommitting further violations of the Securities Exchange Actoperating a pyramid schemeacting as an officer or director of any…

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The Moolenaar Amendment: Why is the DSA pushing pro-pyramid law?

Personally I think MLM regulation in the US is in a pretty good place.Other than the host of affiliate autoship recruitment scams that still need to be cleaned up (nutrition niche, I’m looking at you), there hasn’t been any major Ponzi or pyramid scheme launches in the US since the Vemma and Herbalife busts.With 50% or more retail sales volume the cornerstone of current regulatory enforcement (other than outright securities fraud on the Ponzi side of things), all the FTC and SEC need to do is enforce the law.Not so according to the DSA, who for some reason believe the industry…

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Tracto Venture Network Review: Tracto Ponzi points scheme

Tracto Venture Network provide no information on their website about who owns or runs the business.The Tracto Venture Network website domain (“tractoventure.com”) was privately registered on November 4th, 2016.In a FAQ published on Tracto Venture Network website, the company claims to be an “Australian investment fund and platform”.A search of the Australian Business Register turns up nothing for Tracto Venture Network.An address in Sydney provided on the Tracto Venture Network Facebook page belongs to Servo Corp. As per their website, Servo Corp sell virtual office space at Tracto Venture Network’s provided address.As such it appears Tracto Venture Network’s only corporate connection…

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BitQwik Review: 4×6 matrix gifting scheme

BitQwik provide no information on their website about who owns or runs the business.The BitQwik website domain (“bitqwik.net”) was privately registered on June 23rd, 2017.Further research reveals a BitQwik marketing video featured on the BitQwik website is hosted on a YT channel bearing the name “opitimusX”:This is one of the YT channel name variations used by Sherm Mason, who also goes by “OptimusX”.Sherm Mason first popped up on BehindMLM’s radar as the admin of Magnetic Builder.Magnetic Builder was a $29.95 recruitment scheme launched in 2011.In 2015 Mason (right), launched at least five dubious schemes:In 2016 Mason doubled down on his efforts and…