ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Stock and Bond Fraud, including Boiler Rooms / Pump and Dump Schemes, Mutual Fund & Hedge Fund Fraud, FOREX scams, plus Churning, Private Placements, Venture and Bridge Funding, IPOs, Viaticals Fraud, HYIP and Prime Bank scams, MTNs, Historical Notes, Recovery Schemes, etc. Includes the Jim Norman Project and the Michael Dotson Project and similar HYIP scams.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby notorial dissent » Mon Apr 11, 2016 7:05 pm

If the boys were involved in or with Fuel Doctor, THEY GOT TOOK, that is all there is to it. FD has been a con from the moment it's slimy not so little IPO first reared it head in the Penny market. I watched it then, and I've watched it off and on ever since, and the MO hasn't changed one iota. The thing that amazes me is that it is still out there. I figured it would get shut down early on as most of those did, but it somehow managed to avoid getting caught all these years, 30 some now. If it went down that rathole it ain't never gonna see the light of day again.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:01 pm

Well, of course it was a con. But N.T., with all respect, this is different. The cigarette lighter gizmo is blood brother to all those vitamin supplements hyped by Larry King, orthopedic miracles, sleep helpers, magical juicers, innovative lawn sprinklers, cancer cures, weight loss electro-zappers, X-ray specs sunglasses or any of that other useless shit. All of which are a mainstay of cheap commercial TV giveaway time, all of which have hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of deluded suckers or paid shills raving about it. You have a "product" which costs pennies to make, that looks real cool and high tech; you've got a rap that appeals to people ("How would YOU like to get 25% more mileage out of your CAR?!?!") and enough left-handed "science" to fool the rubes.

But neither Wishner nor Gillis were rubes. They were experienced grifters. Smart, crooked, soulless grifters who ran a successful criminal scheme for twenty years (and before that, who knows what they were involved in.)

You play the odds. What's the worst that could happen with Fuel Doctor? Some consumer magazine gives you a bad rating? Fuck 'em. Respond with praise from one of your scientists and say they're fullashitt. Some government do-gooder acts on a sucker's complaint and investigates? Hah. Show them your numbers and paperwork and "prove" them wrong. Some obscure website claims you're a scam? Double up on ads and internet spam and TV time at 3AM. And sock the dough away in Panama.

There's no indication the NASI boys threw away their money into any other obviously bogus toilet. The only other "investment" known so far is another superficially good business, supplying transport equipment to movie companies. Sure, there's a shell game with ownership of the vehicles and the usual "leaseback" dodge, but it's essentially a good business idea. So is the Fuel Doctor con. How could you go wrong selling air and dreams? That's what Gillis did ever day.

Really, the only major difference is the necessary high visibility. Instead of needing to stay low on the radar like NASI, the object is high visibility, grand ballyhoo, like an old time medicine show. Or Carter's Little Liver Pills. ATM leasebacks were high profit from a circumspect sucker group; Fuel Doctor is the merry opposite, low-cost carnival slum sold on a vast scale. "Sure, Joel, we don't make 12 grand a pop-- but we make it up in volume. You got 2000 suckers-- we got 20 million. You want in or not?"

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby notorial dissent » Mon Apr 11, 2016 10:03 pm

The thing with being a "successful" conman, which the "boys" arguable were, is that they get to thinking they are too smart to get taken. Unless they were actually running Oasis and FD, and there is no indication that they were, the better bet is that they got taken. More investigation should now be in order, but if past interactions with FD are any indication, they got took, along with everyone else who got involved with FD.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Mon Apr 11, 2016 11:52 pm

Notorial Dissent -- 20 bucks says they knew exactly what the game was, and that eventually we'll find out when Fuel Doctor goes ka-blooooie.

Bet? :)

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby notorial dissent » Tue Apr 12, 2016 12:09 am

I've been waiting 30 years and it still hasn't happened. So not holding my breath or making any bets I'll lose.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:29 am

Extremely sensible and understandably conservative. OK, no bet.

btw... 30 years? When exactly did the Fuel Doctor game begin? Has that ever been verified?

edit/later:
Aw, never mind. That information was not that hard to find, and you're only off by a mere 21 years. Pretty close.

http://www.fueldoctorusa.com/company/about-us/
Fuel Doctor LLC was established in 2009 with the purpose of bringing innovative technology to the automotive aftermarket, including power solutions that restore and enhance power efficiencies leading to potential improvement in fuel economy for most vehicles that are 24 months and older.


The thing is, as I have repeated, "Fuel Doctor" is a great scam. The mere fact that they're still in business shows these bandits know what they're doing. Yes, they're selling air, but they sell it successfully, and they're still in business.

Wishner and Gillis didn't pay cash for 40,000 Fuel Doctor gizmos with the plan that they'd install them in a giant fleet of their own cars-- they bought a piece of a successful scam.

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby notorial dissent » Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:16 am

FD crawled out from under its rock in 1985/6, I don't remember the exact date anymore, it has gone through several incarnations and apparently subtle name shifts since then and has changed little in the morphing.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:58 am

Fine, but you're proving my point. It's a successful scam that's sustained itself for over 25 years. A product that does absolutely nothing yet generates income; probably costs 2 bucks to manufacture and sells for $60; a corporate shell that has withstood scrutiny, lawsuits, scientific exposure and all the website sniping you could imagine. And yet, it still clearly makes money.

That is a damned successful con game. And unlike a Ponzi, it will not exponentially expand until it's unsustainable. If the demand for the nothing-product drops off, you just tell the Chinese to stop soldering the stupid things together. If you're looking for a solid, proven criminal investment, there it is.

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Gregg » Tue Apr 12, 2016 5:26 am

Wishner and Gillis didn't pay cash for 40,000 Fuel Doctor gizmos with the plan that they'd install them in a giant fleet of their own cars-- they bought a piece of a successful scam.


Or they got took. My vote is they got took.

They COULD HAVE bought them all with a plan to get each of the NASI investors to buy them in bulk, maybe even to retail them at the supposed ATM locations. I can think of dozens of reasons or stories about how, when and why they did it that still end with "they got took"

Hell, its hard to come up with ANY story of someone, anyone, sending money to Fuel Doctor that doesn't end with "They got took"
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Tue Apr 12, 2016 5:29 am

Oh, ye of little faith.

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby The Observer » Tue Apr 12, 2016 4:58 pm

Sometimes people get taken by themselves.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Tue Apr 12, 2016 7:39 pm

Well, ge'mmen, we part intellectual company on this sub-subject. I see Fuel Doctor as a prime example of the time-honored world of ballyhoo thievery. Sure, it does nothing, but with the right pitch aimed directly at fear in the human heart and desire to be one step up on the other guy, it's boffo. And that's why it was (and is) an excellent investment. Especially if you've already got a criminal turn of mind.

Imagine it's 1975. Some guy comes to you and says, "Pal, trust me on this. You invest a half million bucks in my start-up and you will make fifteen fortunes. Here's the idea: bottled water. Individual little bottles. It's water from the very earth itself, pure, clear, the source of life! It doesn't come to you through rusty pipes or some moldy rain barrel, it's available in pretty plastic bottles with a sharp logo on them! You can walk around, run, exercise, drive-- anything! And you'll have a nice, cool bottle of water to refresh you! It's spring water! Well, okay, you can say that about any water, but it's true, ain't it? And it's filtered with state of the art scientific techniques to provide the cleanest possible taste! Yeah, that's true of any metropolitan water system, but it's not a lie, okay? Half million bucks for development and advertising, and I absolutely guarantee you, you'll be in on the ground floor of a gimmick that will rock the world."

And the pitchman would be absolutely correct.

Or it's 1938. A guy comes to your office and says, "I represent Carter's Little Liver Pills. You undoubtedly know the brand name. We've been in business for 45 years, and are the world's best-known and most successful patent medicine manufacturer. We are a tradition, a part of the American lexicon. 'He's got more excuses than Carter has liver pills!' Heh heh heh. We believe that we can enhance our profits a hundredfold by sponsoring entertainment programs on the airwaves. Radio has permeated every home in our country. That's 120,000,000 potential customers bombarded with our brand name every week. And down the line, picture-radio promises to do the same. We're raising capital to buy this time on the airwaves. We'd like you to buy stock in our company and share in the proceeds of what we envision as a natural and giant expansion of our market. Hm? What do the pills do? Well, they don't cause any harm. And if our customers swear they feel much better when they take them, who are we to doubt them? Sign here."

And you'd be right to sign, if you wanted to make a shitpot fulla dough. At least until 1959, when the FTC made Carter take the catchy word "liver" out of the brand name, and suckers finally asked themselves, "Hey, what do these damned pills really do? Anything?"

That's Fuel Doctor. The NASI boys weren't buying the stupid product, they put money into the scheme. That's not flushing cash down the toilet. More like the Gambino family buying into a Castellano restaurant franchise.

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby The Observer » Tue Apr 12, 2016 10:26 pm

Ted, I don't disagree with you in regards to the fine line between what is scamming and ballyhoo marketing. And I agree that for the most part, the examples you cite are good ones in terms of things that the government should have shut down long ago as just being plain lies. I expect that the biggest reason it hasn't is because there is enough people out there who want to believe that these products and services have some value or importance to them. If the government did shut down Carter's Little Liver Pills, I suspect that the groundswell of grass roots anger would force the government to reopen the Carter Pill factories ("The ebil gubmint is trying to kill us by taking away our pills! String up the bastards!").

But I doubt that the founders of Fuel Doctor are eagerly and generously sharing their profits with their investors. More likely they gave them a pittance to entice them further into the dragon's lair and then told them that for an extra-large investment, we will make you partners and let you go out and sell FD to even more customers. And hey, if you work hard and bring more customers in, we will cut you in for some percentage to be determined later. In other words, think Amway.

And if this was set up in anyways like the Amway crowd is, then Ed and Joel got took.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:57 pm

Yessss.... but---

It wasn't set up like an Amway scam. The FD boys were (are?) were selling product, not sales franchises. And there's no indication the ATM boys ever considered going into the Fake Auto Parts business. Ergo, the arrangement was something else.

And there's no indication thus far that Gillis & Wishner were ever dissatisfied with Fuel Doctor's use of their money: no lawsuits, no abrupt withdrawal of their funds, no industry gossip, no comments to ATM investors pro or con, and no complaints of having been snookered within their defense statements. Thus far, of course, there has been no forensic examination of Fuel Doctor's books either, so it's difficult to say what the NASI team got from FD in exchange for an infusion of capital.

If the two reprobates showed a history of pissing money away into Nigerian email scams, or funding uranium exploration in Rhode Island, or even going on Vegas roulette binges, I'd say, "Well, there they go again." But that's not the case with NASI & Fuel Doctor.

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby The Observer » Wed Apr 13, 2016 2:59 am

Tednewsom wrote:Yessss.... but---

It wasn't set up like an Amway scam. The FD boys were (are?) were selling product, not sales franchises.


Ted, I hate to tell you this, but Amway sells product. They have to sell product in order to make money. They make that money by selling Amway's products to the people who get swept up into the bottomless pits of the downlines. Every potential Amway target is told two things: (1) you need to buy at least $200 worth of Amway products a month as a way of showing loyalty to the company and as an example to your downline, and (2) your recruited downline members need to spend $200 worth of product a month as well. The scam has several facets to it, but the basic premise is to sell overpriced product to the rubes that they could get elsewhere for the same quality but for a far better cost. So the upline guys are constantly beating on the downliners to keep buying product (when not selling them motivational tapes). They rationalize this to their downline along the lines of "hey,-you-spend-that-much-money-every month-on-the-same-types-of-product-so-you-might-as-well-as-spend-it-on-our-crap" which is demonstrably false for practically any normal American household.

Amway has avoided prosecution (but not investigtation) for running a pyramid scheme basically because they are providing product that does have some intrinsic value and the MLM is not officially ran or owend by the manufacturing component of Amway; it is not against the law to sell overpriced cleaning products. By using the downline scheme, Amway avoids all of the intrinsic costs of trying to get their product into retails stores and can maximize the return of profit to them. Amway has had to pay some expensive fines in the past when they were found crossing that thin line, such as one time requring the distributors to buy massive amounts of inventory.

Amway has never sold a sales franchise that I am aware of. They just hold out these fabled Diamond 'suppliers" as "evidence" of how far you can go with your future downline. So whoever told you that Amway doesn't sell product really took you.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Gregg » Wed Apr 13, 2016 4:44 pm

Tednewsom wrote:Yessss.... but---

Yesss.... but---

It wasn't set up like an Amway scam. The FD boys were (are?) were selling product, not sales franchises. And there's no indication the ATM boys ever considered going into the Fake Auto Parts business. Ergo, the arrangement was something else.

Yep, they were selling product, but the guys running Fuel Doctor are nothing if not good at maximizing profit. I wouldn't be too surprised to find that not only were Joel and Ed perfect big fish suckers, but that they were not the first "partners" to make big investments and never get it back.

And there's no indication thus far that Gillis & Wishner were ever dissatisfied with Fuel Doctor's use of their money: no lawsuits, no abrupt withdrawal of their funds, no industry gossip, no comments to ATM investors pro or con, and no complaints of having been snookered within their defense statements. Thus far, of course, there has been no forensic examination of Fuel Doctor's books either, so it's difficult to say what the NASI team got from FD in exchange for an infusion of capital.

I can think of more than a few good reasons why. No legal complaints? If you rob a drug dealer, its not too surprising if he doesn't call the cops to report the missing kilo of coke from his guest bath. No public complaining or comments? How many people go to the front of the room and start off the after dinner speech with "Not only am I a crook, but I'm pretty stupid, too" (Well, Berry Minkow and Jordan Belfort actually make a living doing that, or used to, but both are outliers) Funny you mention Amway, because Amway is the poster child company of doing something that just OUGHT TO BE illegal, but they spend enough on lawyers to stay in business. Fuel Doctor does pretty much exactly the same thing, if on a smaller scale.

If the two reprobates showed a history of pissing money away into Nigerian email scams, or funding uranium exploration in Rhode Island, or even going on Vegas roulette binges, I'd say, "Well, there they go again." But that's not the case with NASI & Fuel Doctor.

Joel and Ed never managed to steal and retain enough at once to make any serious contributions to the Hookers and Blow account. If you watched Breaking Bad, do you remember when Walter White and Jesse first go to Saul for legal help? They've moved a few pounds of Meth, at presumably a few hundred dollars A GRAM, and have less than $10,000 to show for it. Being a big criminal doesn't always really equal being a good criminal.


Occam's Razor....

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Wed Apr 13, 2016 7:50 pm

Awww, c'mon, fellas. Amway makes money on selling dealerships to the rubes (partnerships, dealerships, franchises, permission to become a salesman, whatever you want to call it.), who then move to their next level and sell more to dealerships to their idiot friends, and so on. They MUST pay for their membership (in the form of buying overpriced product), so the scamsters are guaranteed a chunk of dough from the field operatives; likewise do all the new suckers brought in by an old sucker pay either an inflated place for product or join the ranks of the sales staff-- which again floods profit back to the top. The product is incidental; it's carnival slum. The ring toss and the shooting gallery are profitable because of the scheme itself; the 25 cent fuzzy bunny you get after spending 5 bucks on more tickets is a gimmee.

And that's not the way the Fuel Doctor scam works. That's much, much simpler. It's Carter's Little Liver Pills... it's Barnum's sign, "This Way To The Egress." It's a one-off purchase for comparatively minimal dough; you don't subscribe to a monthly hit, you aren't lured into becoming a dealer, you don't need to keep upgrading your now-obsolete product. Sixty bucks, in and out. Its price is enough that it's hugely profitable on a cost-v-price basis, and cheap enough that few people are going to sue over $60. It really is a great scam. It's reprehensible, it's All-American, it's base & evil, but it's a great fraud, six inches this side of illegal.

The NASI jokers were not utter boneheads. The complex jiggery-pokery they did with their 20-year ATM tap dance ought to show you that. I don't understand why you wouldn't give them the simple credit of recognizing a good con when they see it, and buying a piece of it.

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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby worried » Thu Apr 14, 2016 2:47 am

I love seeing all the theories... You all have good points...

I keep going back to the fact that I don't remember seeing payments TO Joel/Ed FROM Fuel Doctor in the lengthy documentation of debits/credits from NASI and/or Joel/Ed's accts. Maybe I didn't notice or forgot seeing them... But, another thing, I DO remember that Mark Soffa told the Receiver (or whoever) that he was receiving monthly checks from NASI as IF he bought ATM's, but he never did (strangely similar to the banker's final arrangement with Joel). From what I remember seeing, Joel, Ed, and NASI had all given money to FD with it coming steadily from NASI in the end... There's the coincidence that FD had an account at the CNB bank. *MY* theory is that the banker and FD were already well practiced at laundering money (but who knows where the money was coming from or where it was going, I think, based on the allegations in the complaint, it's very possible somebody else had their hooks in the banker). It certainly looks like, in the complaint, that the banker was shaking down NASI, and the fact that money only flowed one way from NASI to FD, looks like a similar, ongoing shakedown initiated by the banker introducing NASI to FD. But, that's just me... my imagination is filling in some holes I know.... but this IS so much FUN!

I guess the point though should be to be hoping to find money, and my conspiracy theory makes it harder to do that. All the 'losers' in the NASI scam can only hope the complainants are successful in getting CNB held liable...

I forgot to point out that all the financial docs I could find on Fuel Doctor (through Morningstar or SEC search) showed FD never showing a profit, it always LOST MONEY... at least on paper anyway... It seems clear the banker knew NASI was a scam, and he would have told Soffa about it as well. The banker would had to have known about the money flowing from NASI to FD because they both had accounts under him. If Joel/Ed really expected to see any money coming back to them from FD, it had to be because they were ALL taking advantage of a money laundering scheme. They were lucky if they were operating in a vacuum and noone else had their snout in their trough...
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby The Observer » Thu Apr 14, 2016 4:14 am

Tednewsom wrote: Amway makes money on selling dealerships to the rubes (partnerships, dealerships, franchises, permission to become a salesman, whatever you want to call it.), who then move to their next level and sell more to dealerships to their idiot friends, and so on


No, Ted, that is patently false. Amway does not sell dealerships in any sense of the word. I know you want to use sophistry and semantics to make this claim, but legally it does not hold up. I happen to know they don't sell dealerships since my sister and brother-in-law stuck their heads into that kool-ade barrel despite my advisement to stay away.

The product is incidental


No, Ted, that is also false. The product is the key to the whole scam. It is what keeps Amway from being prosecuted for pyramiding. This is the reason that Joel and Ed went to jail - because they were pretending to sell their investors ATMS that didn't exist. Joel and Ed thought their ATMs were incidental. If Joel and Ed had actually bought ATMs as promised, they wouldn't be in jail today on the charges brought against them.

Simply put, Amway makes money by selling product. Otherwise, no one would have a reason to give Amway any money. And the same is true for Fuel Doctor. They make a product, and put it out there to sell. They are not going to solicit partners and give up their profits unless they have a need for capital investment that cannot be realized from their net profits. In other words, if Fuel Doctor is making a ton of money, they have no need to bring Ed and Joel in as partners. Especially since FD now has gotten their product into retail stores. They would rather Ed and Joel participate as distributors and buy their product for the purpose of resale.
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Re: ATM LEASEBACK SCHEMES-- any insight?

Postby Tednewsom » Thu Apr 14, 2016 5:49 am

They would rather Ed and Joel participate as distributors and buy their product for the purpose of resale.


Then... why... is there... no... indication... that they were... ever... "distributors"?

Consider worried's musings, above. Too many anomalies to explain away as coincidence, too intricate to dismiss with "Oh, Gillis and Wishner were idiot suckers."


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