by Brian Mahany
It’s no secret that I am an avid reader of Tracy Coenen’s Fraud Files Blog. She finds stories that are often missed by mainstream media. Reading her blog tonight I found several interesting stories about Marcus Evans. Like Tracy, we too received a sales pitch this summer to attend a summit where we would get face time with several chief in house attorneys potentially interested in our services.
The pitch sounded good but like most successful professionals, I didn’t have all day. The caller didn’t want to deviate the script and get to the point – the point being the price for the event was a mere $5o,000. (Tracy’s blog says it was a only $49,500 in the interests of complete fairness.) I understood why the caller didn’t want to deviate from the script – had I known of the price I would have slammed down the receiver during the first few seconds of the call.
Obviously I didn’t attend their high level summit so I can’t honestly say whether it was a good event. I suspect few people shelled out that kind of money.
After reading Tracy’s article, I immediately went to the ripoffreport.com. There I found 32 postings with such flattering statements such as “liars, crooks and con-men” and “lying, bullying, unethical and cheating employees.” Even an ex-employee claims the horror stories are true. Another former employee says they cheated him / her out of commissions as well as ripping off their clients. I believe the exact words were “low life drug addicts, alcoholics and scumbags.”
I understand that not every claim on the ripoff report is accurate. Anyone with a grudge can post. 32 posts, however, causes me concern. The tactics Tracy have encountered – essentially threats to anyone posting a negative review – are especially telling.
We recently brought a successful claim against a similar operation. Same essential sales pitch, although that particular company sold sponsorships to medical conferences. (I use the term “conference” loosely.)
If you have purchased a seat at one of Marcus Evans’ $49,500 summits and had problems, let us know. We would love to know if the stories are true. If they are, Marcus Evans needs to pay up.
If you are a former employee and left because of a hostile work environment, we’d love to hear from you as well. One self claimed former employee tells of constant off color racial jokes and rampant sexual harassment. Checking lookbeforeyouleap.net, a popular site in which workers can anonymously rate their workplace, a whooping 78% of the workforce disapproves of CEO Marcus P.B. Evans.
I am not sure whether any of the reviews are real but my opinion (backed by years of experience) is that something isn’t right. Either Marcus Evans is running a shoddy boiler room operation or he has a lot of jealous competitors who post nasty things on multiple websites.
UPDATE: Since posting this article, we have been contacted by Marcus Evans. They have invited us to participate in one of their programs and make our own evaluation. We have accepted that invitation and will report back in late March 2012. Usually we receive cease and desist letters; to receive phone calls from senior management and an offer to see them in action was quite refreshing. Stay tuned for more details! Brian Mahany 02/07/2012
SECOND UPDATE: The company is not, repeat NOT, a scam. I attended the March 18th event and found it so worthwhile that I signed up for the next two (and paid full price). My full comments can be read here. Brian Mahany 03/22/2012
Mahany & Ertl is a boutique law firm concentrating in fraud and fraud recovery. Recently we filed our first fraud class action suit against one of the largest mortgage companies in the U.S. Big or small, we are interested in stomping out fraud.