Dear Airleaf Victims and Supporters,
As of today, we have 371 people in our group. Welcome to our new members. Please know that our group is working hard to find restitution and retribution for the fraudulence committed against us by Carl Lau of Airleaf Publishing.
First, we had good news from Captain Jeff Buskirk. For those of you who didn’t get his email, I’m attaching Friday’s correspondence from him:
This is an update on the case so you will know what is going on from the law enforcement side. First, I have been given to work on this case as much as needed and so I will be taking care of this case. Second, I have delivered a letter and needs you have sent me to Carl Lau's attorney thru the Prosecutor's Office hoping to get your books, manuscripts, etc, and maybe some refunds back. Don't spend your refunds yet, though, as I don't have that much faith. Anyway, I have also suggested to them a day or two where any of you close enough to come and pick up your items could do so. Again, I am waiting for reply. The case is coming along and I am finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel on paperwork and getting this organized for presentation to the Prosecuting Attorney.
Please try to communicate with me thru email, but I really have a hard time answering any specific Qs at this time until I get all your records from our forensic computer guy. Airleaf did in fact keep records of each of your sales etc, so eventually we should be able to tell how much they owe each one of you on royalties as well as no services formed.
When you have this many people complaining, it takes a long time to go thru each one and find out where the cases are going, so please be patient.
I will stay in contact with you with updates as something happens.
Capt. Jeffrey C Buskirk % Martinsville Police DeptPO Box 1415 Martinsville, Indiana 46151765-342-6614 Office 765-342-6725 FAX
This is good news for us. We were worried when Captain Buskirk was reassigned back to the street patrol. But now he is able to spend time each day working on our case which is a big plus. That’s why it’s so important to make sure that you send him your information about what you feel is owed to you material and money wise. If you haven’t done so yet, please email him at: firstname.lastname@example.org
I want to thank those of you who have sent complaints to the FBI and Postal Authorities. At this point of time, these reports are our best hope of achieving our goals. This was confirmed by the following:
At the suggestion of my author friend Richard Fracasso, I spoke to the U.S. Attorney’s office in Indiana on Thursday. I had an extensive conversation with the representative who confirmed more of what I learned last week from the new Assistant Attorney General (AG). The U.S. Attorney is in charge of federal criminal crimes as opposed to the AG’s office which in Indiana is only responsible for civil charges. That surprised some of you, but apparently each state works differently with the AG’s role. In Indiana, it is for civil charges with a couple of criminal charges involving Medicare fraud—not publishing fraud.
The U.S. Attorney explained to me that “fraud” has to be proven. I gave him some examples of how we were scammed by Airleaf, and he clarified better for me what is needed. So, my authors, here is where I need your help for starters.
Some of you bought promotional packages for Germany, London, and Hollywood. Some of you received reports back from Airleaf in writing or verbally stating what had happened with your book. I need you to look for those reports so that I can compare them. Some of you have written to me that you have those reports, and I would appreciate your letting me know if this is the case as soon as possible. Please drop me at note at Bonkaye@aol.com if you saved yours. I believe the Hollywood reports stated which producers had been “pitched” your books and what the results were. For the Germany and London trips, if you received either verbal or written reports about your book, that would be fine. Some of you were also told the truth—the trips to Europe never took place, but your money was never returned. If you are in that situation, please let me know.
If you have not filed a report with the postal inspector or FBI, I am giving you the links to do so again. If you don’t have hard copies of any mail because you didn’t save it, you can still fill out the online postal link. If you need a copy of the “cheat sheet” for the postal form that you print out when you have information to send in, just let me know and I’ll email it to you. Also, please send me a note when you complete any of these forms if you haven’t done so yet because I am tracking the numbers.
FBI LINK: Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)
Link for Postal Inspector if you have copies of any Airleaf promotions mailed to you: http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/radDocs/ps8165.pdf
Link for Postal Inspector if you don’t have copies of what was mailed to you or if you prefer to fill in an online complaint:
POSTAL ONLINE COMPLAINTS
Next week, I will ask you to fill out for my own use to try to gather any pieces together that I can submit to the U.S. Attorney proving fraud. It will be an easy form asking you basic questions. All of you on this list have contacted me, but I need specific information. I’m not looking to make extra work for you, and it will only take a few moments to fill out. But I want to compile as much as the facts as possible so we can present our case to the proper authorities and make sure that we build our case.
In my effort to get information from Amazon.com, I sent this letter to their corporate headquarters in Washington State.
December 27, 2007
I am hoping that you can help our group, Airleaf Victims, with a quandary we are in.
I represent a group of nearly 300 authors who either had books published through Airleaf Publishing or bought promotional services from this company. You can see the information on my website at www.AirleafVictims.com. This company defrauded us out of nearly 1 million dollars. We are taking whatever legal action is possible to see that the owner of the company, Carl Lau, has criminal charges pressed against him.
In the meantime, he shut down the company last week as can be verified by the Martinsville, IN police department. I am trying to find the best solutions for our group as far as republishing their books. But in the meantime, we will depend on whatever stock Amazon has left to sell.
My questions to you on behalf of our group are:
1. Is there any way you can provide us with an accurate accounting of how many books have been sold? We will need this to pursue legal damages.
2. Is there any way for you to make sure that no further payments go to Airleaf since almost all of our authors have never seen the monies due to them, and with the closing of Airleaf, we will never see any future sales.
I appreciate your help and input in this matter.
Bonnie Kaye, M.Ed.
This week, I received this response:
Greetings from Amazon.com.We are responding to a recent request that we received via postal mail concerning your dispute with AirLeaf Publishing. As Amazon.com is an Internet company, we ask that all communication be done through our online site. For this reason, we are following-up via e-mail.As my colleague, Johnathan, explained in your phone conversation, we aren't able to disclose sales figures. As to stopping payments to the publisher, that would involve contractual obligations that we in Customer Service are not able to address.As you mention there is a criminal investigation, you may want to contact our legal department if specific information is required. As a matter of practice, Amazon.com normally requires valid subpoenas before complying with third-party requests to provide information about sellers or customers.
P.O. Box 81226
Seattle, WA 98108-1226
I hope this information was helpful.
Thank you for your interest in Amazon.com.
This week, I was able to speak to the legal department at Amazon.com. I updated our member information which has grown extensively since that first correspondence, and I explained how we need to find an accurate accounting of our sales because this can be a boost for us. If we can prove that royalties were sent in and used for anything other than royalties, this can be part of the criminal charges. I also explained how authors were not receiving royalties, so we didn’t want Airleaf getting our money. The representative stated that he would meet with the Amazon.com lawyers to see what could be done for us. I will keep you posted as soon as I hear anything.I am continuing to work on publicity for our Airleaf Victims. Hopefully, this week we’ll have some word from FOX News. Also, if there are other Airleaf Victims in Indiana who are willing to talk to the press via television or newspaper, please email me as quickly as possible.
With love and hope,
Bonnie Kaye, Organizer, Airleaf Victims