September 8, 2007
Dear Fellow Authors,
First, let me thank those of you who have submitted your paperwork to the Attorney General and Detective Buskirk of the Martinsville police department.
Yesterday I had a long conversation with the detective who is compiling all of your information. Even if you are not able to find receipts, contracts, or emails, please send him your story with whatever facts you do remember because this will build the case for Airleaf to supply him with all of his records.
Here's is his email address so you can send him your story:
You may feel more compelled to speed up your story after I give you the following news.
Since starting my Airleaf Victims campaign, I have received information from five ex-Airleaf employees. This information was extremely disturbing to me, and I know you'll feel that way too after you read it. In case you think that any of the ex-employees are exaggerating, well, they're not. All of this will be proven when Airleaf is confronted by the investigation and forced to show their records. I have compiled some of this information to share with you.
1) Airleaf sold the authors a package called the Germany Book Fair - and didn't go. Carl Lau had his staff tell the authors that during the time he was supposed to be in Germany that he was out of town at the book fair, but he was sitting right at his desk. That was fall of 2006.
2) Airleaf was selling the authors Bowker Club after they knew that Bowker had discontinued the service. $84,000 was collected from that service that never existed.
3) Airleaf sold the London Book Fair in April 2007 to authors, but again, didn't go.
4) Airleaf sells the Books-To-Film Program where Carl Lau supposedly pitches books to Hollywood producers, but doesn't. The last trip he took to Hollywood for this program in April 2007 consisted of taking a tour of a studio instead of pitching the books. The authors are supposed to get a report about whom he spoke to and what they said, but he instructed his employees to make up false reports to send to the authors about two weeks after the fact. Or, he himself lied to the author and made up stuff to appease them.
5) Airleaf sold ads in Advance Magazine, the New York Times and other large ads for hundreds of dollars but had no intention of actually running the ads.
6) Airleaf has no money to pay the suppliers, but Carl Lau insists that his sales people keep selling services that they know won't be done.
7) Writes off his plane, car, and gas on the company's expenses even though they have nothing to do with the company.
8) The www.americanauthorcontest.com is another total fraud. It's being run by Airleaf to draw people in so they can put them on their mailing list to try to sell them something. There are no real sponsors and the judges are the Hollywood producer people Carl supposedly is in business with. He actually just pays them money out of Airleaf's money.
9) Carl had one representative sell a Kirkus Review for $799 in February '06 in which he never submitted the books or paid Kirkus to do Kirkus only charges $250 for a review on their website). Every one of those authors got completely scammed. The books were never sent in.
10) When an author pays money, they aren't paying for their printing, they are paying for printing jobs of other authors from many months prior to their job. That's why so many authors are told, "Your book is at the printer."
11) Airleaf charges big bucks to authors that claim to target 5,000 - 10,000 bookstores, television producers, radio shows, etc. Those numbers were completely pulled out of the air who knew for a fact that all those packages were frauds from the very beginning.
12) Airleaf has also resorted to selling the authors their own books back to make some money, claiming it's an inventory reduction. It's really a last ditch effort to get cash in.
13) Airleaf keeps touting the movie "Jessie's Girl" to mislead authors into thinking that their books are being made into movies. I investigated this claim after three of the five ex-employees told me this. I went to the website of where this film is being made--Litestone. Of course, there seems to be a real connection between this company and Airleaf. If you go to Google and type in "Life Stone Entertainment," one of the links is to Airleaf. And remember that contest mentioned above by one of the ex-employees? When you go to the link for the contest, one of the judges is Al Smith, the CEO of Life Stone when you look up their staff. And Jessie's Girl is coincidentally written by Lawrence Dixon, the Vice President of Life Stone. So it seems like there is a genuine conspiracy here that I will leave the police to investigate.
These are some of the major issues that were passed on to me that I wanted to share with you. The people who wrote to me claim they left Airleaf because they could no longer participate in the fraud. These accusations will all be investigated by the police and Attorney General.
Please help me with this:
If you paid for any of the specific services listed above such as the Germany or London book fairs, pitching of books to Hollywood, or press releases sent to thousands of non-existant people, please let me know so I can start sorting out the fraud.
In the next day or so, I'll send you a compilation of your complaints (anonymous of course) so you can see the degree of fraud involved here.
By the way, one of the ex-employees stated, "I understand you are possibly putting together a lawsuit, but I seriously doubt you will get any money from Airleaf. They have literally run out of money." I guess this is true because recently, they were unable to meet their payroll for two weeks.
BUT--ON THE BRIGHT SIDE--when I spoke to Detective Buskirk, he explained to me that any personal assets that Carl Lau has tied into the business could be sold to compensate us for the money we put out. So that was encouraging. As I mentioned earlier, according to one of the ex-employees, "Carl Lau writes off his plane, car, and gas on the company's expenses even though they have nothing to do with the company." So hopefully those assets will reimburse our money one day.
Please let me know if you have any questions. You know I will fight with you until we win, but I need your help as well. I'll be speaking to another class action attorney this week and let you know the results. I still haven't heard back from the first one.
With great hope,