Last updated on November 20th, 2015
Google Treasure Chest Pay Back to Innocent, Duped, Scammed Consumers
It was over three years ago that I first came across a scam, centred around Pacific Webworks (PWW), mainly under the Google Treasure Chest and Google Money Tree monikers. As I delved deeper, along with other folks, we came across the true scale of the scam. Our researches then took us into similar scams run by Jesse Willms, all using the same modus operandi of:
- negative option marketing
- illegal cash withdrawals from bank accounts
- a myriad network of affiliates
- fake or holding addresses, many in foreign countries outside the normal laws, that opened and closed rapidly allowing consumers no come-back
- illegal medical or wealth claims
- offshore banking, now known following the recent banking scandals to be heavily centred around the City of London
We always recommended that consumers issue a credit card charge-back against PWW and Willms. This is the only way to stop the withdrawals and to counter the “businesses” operations at source. And it worked!
Yesterday, the USA’s FTC issued a statement as well as money in the form of cheques to all consumers known to have been defrauded by PWW and others in the Google Treasure Chest/Money Tree scam. Their statement is here: FTC Returns More than $2 Million to Buyers of the “Google Money Tree” Work-at-Home Scam. They say,
Under a settlement agreement with the FTC, the defendants are banned from selling products through “negative option” transactions, in which the seller interprets consumers’ silence or inaction as permission to charge them, and are also prohibited from making misleading or unsupported claims while marketing or selling any product or service. The settlement also required the defendants to surrender cash and other assets, and these are now being used by the FTC to refund consumers who bought the “Google Money Tree,” “Google Pro,” or “Google Treasure Chest” products.
They also include instructions for people who haven’t yet claimed – so if you were conned into getting rich with Google or similar, contact them now and get at least part of your money back! This is what they said,
The checks will be mailed by an administrator working for the FTC. Consumers who made purchases from “Google Money Tree,” “Google Pro,” or “Google Treasure Chest” will receive approximately $24.50. Consumers who have questions, or who have not yet filed a complaint with the FTC and wish to do so, should call the Redress Administrator, Gilardi & Co. LLC, toll free, at 1-877-226-2847. Consumers seeking general information about the FTC’s redress program may visit the FTC’s refunds website. The FTC never requires consumers to pay money or provide information before redress checks can be cashed.
Checks will be mailed on September 11, 2012, and must be cashed on or before November 12, 2012.
So get on in there folks!
Crime Pays, But Not Always – added on 18 Sep 2012
Here’s a reminder of how crime does not pay – the Pacific Webworks share price!
Since the successive hits on PWW following our and others’ investigations their share price has languished at around a penny for about half the past year! Their meteoric rise, right as the depression started to hit, was entirely due to conning vulnerable people in desperate times.
- Then folks like me started shouting!
- Then Google took note and sued them.
- Then the FTC laid charges.
- Then they were found to have funny-looking accounts and changed their accountants and management.
- Now they’ve had to pay out to the very people who were conned.
So as I just said,
Get on in there folks!