AIRLEAF VICTIMS UPDATE SEPTEMBER 7, 2008
Dear Fellow Airleaf Victims and Friends,
Next Sunday is the annual Brooklyn Book Fair in Brooklyn, New York. I am excited about attending the event so I can promote our new co-op, Books Of Excellence. If any of you are in the New York area and would like to meet up with me, please email me at Bonkaye@aol.com and I’ll make arrangements to meet you. We are constantly adding new members to our co-op, so if you haven’t had a chance to look at it lately, check us out at www.BooksOfExcellence.com.
I have been in touch with the U.S. Attorney in Indiana to see how our criminal case is coming along. I have been assured that the investigation is still being worked on and conversations by investigators taken place. I am hoping to have more information for you within the next several weeks.
I would like to take some time to talk about members of our group becoming VICTIMS all over again. This week, I have been working with five of our victims to help them with publishing and publicity scams where once again they have been taken for large sums of money. Omni Publicity, owned by Joe Ullrich in Tampa, Florida, promised one of our authors this deal:
Research & Development
Omni Experts Online Directory Listing (1 year – a $399.00 value)
Press Release Creation
Broadcast (Online) Press Release Distribution
Twelve (12) Talk Radio Interviews
Any additional Interviews are no charge
Total Investment: $ 2395.00
And then came the GUARANTEE--
OMNI PUBLICITY AND PUBLIC RELATIONS GROUP GUARANTEE
Omni Publicity And Public Relations Group placements are no risk to you!
You only pay for the interviews you receive…period!
We assume all the financial risk! The professional staff of Omni Publicity And Public Relations Group will aggressively market you to talk radio shows throughout the country. Our efforts will yield the desired results of interviews – and you only pay for the interviews you receive!
We strongly recommend this campaign to you with complete confidence as it has been so successful for so many of our other clients. This exact campaign has secured interviews for our authors on a national, regional and local level. Some of our authors have also appeared on national TV as well as in print - most notability Dr. Phil, A Current Affair, Geraldo, FOX News Channel, NPR radio, The Miami Herald and GLOBE to name just a mere few – as a direct result of this campaign! The rates within are guaranteed for 30 days from the date of this proposal!
Our author fell for these smooth talking promises. This happened two years ago, and there was never one interview. When I called the Joe Ullrich on the victim’s behalf, explaining I was the leader of a predatory publishing/publicity group, he was very defensive telling me that the author was “crazy.” Often, disgruntled authors are classified as “crazy” by predatory publishers when they express their dissatisfaction. Good comeback, huh?
Anyway, I told the owner that he promised services that were never received, and that I have emails between the two parties where he offers a lot of “excuses” but no action. He claimed that he sent out emails to the media. When I asked him who the media was, he replied, “We can’t reveal that list.” When I asked him who he personally called as he guaranteed, again, “I don’t give out that information.” Okay, what information do you give out? That’s when the phone slammed in my ear. No doubt there may be authors who are happy with Mr. Ullrich, but that’s irrelevant to our author victim who received NOTHING that she was promised.
The “EXCUSES” need to be a RED FLAG to those of you who are currently paying for services that aren’t being delivered or paying for services that are free like book reviews from Barnes and Noble and Midwest. So now, I will be making a case through the Florida law enforcement agencies to help our victim get her money back.
Another one of our victims recently paid for a “Hollywood Dream” scheme in Atlanta, Georgia. The company, Jigsaw Filmwork, owned by a Timothy Crenshaw, promised her to put together a package for a Hollywood deal. He convinced her that there were investors ready to pay for the production, and the famous key gripper turned producer, Courtney Jones, would produce her movie. If you go on the Jigsaw Filmwork website at the following address, http://jigsawfilmworks-llc.com/mainmenu.html, you can see Mr. Jones as part of the staff. Is he? No clue. I just know this author was scammed. She paid the money, and waited and waited for a production package to be presented to her. In fact, she was supposed to be flown to “Hollywood” next week to meet with the production crew. They even had the nerve to have her make a list of who she would like to star in the movie. And even better—this company was found on the same website as Carl Lau, Go Big Network, looking for an investor. Here’s his profile that I found:
Company: Jigsaw Filmworks
Location: Atlanta, GA (USA)
My Focus: Startup;
Startup Company Profile
Startup Name Jigsaw Filmworks
Location Atlanta, GA (United States)
Year Founded 2007
Legal Status Unspecified
Business Stage Unspecified
Number of Employees Unspecified
Company Description We are an independent film company that produces films for the big screen, television and video releases. Timothy Crenshaw(Jigsaw Filmsorks) has been in the Entertainment field for 15 years working with artists such as JaRule, 112,Black Reign to name a few in the recording field. Now that he has moved over to the motion pictures industry business he has the pleasure of teaming with well know director/producer Courtney Jones based out of California.Courtney Jones has been involved with several motion pictures such as Star Wars, The Bratz, Fronterz plus many others.
Somehow, Mr. Crenshaw has come down with some rare illness called, “Don’t look for me after I get your money, ” and has failed to deliver the goods. I think he would be an excellent partner for Carl Lau or maybe Litestone Entertainment, don’t you?
As of late, some of you know I have been working with our victims who have become victims once again through Jones Harvest Publishing. To address this problem, I put up another website at www.JonesHarvestFraudVictims.com. I felt compelled to do this at the point when I had over a dozen new victims of this company. Jones Harvest has rallied their select fans to attack me for exposing them, but I stand by my claims that people are being defrauded through this company. At first, people were able to get their money back through threats, but now that has changed, no matter how much they “guarantee” your satisfaction or giving your money back. Well, actually, on their website, they make that guarantee to…“all new clients a money-back guarantee on our publishing, promotional and bookselling services.” Hmmm, what about their old clients who are asking for their money back?
Fans of Jones Harvest (3 to be exact) have written to me directly or via blogs to state that they are thrilled with the services from the company. And for those authors, I am thrilled for them. Remember—Airleaf had clients who loved them also. I wasn’t fighting for the ones who loved the company—I was fighting for those of us who were victims of the company.
When Brien Jones left Airleaf and started his own company, he promised that he would be “different.” He frowned on all of those schemes that made people have dreams that would never come true—or so he said. He only wanted to “sell books.” For that reason, I gave him a chance. I never knew him at Airleaf and he offered to republish my Airleaf book for free in return for allowing him to post my picture on one of his numerous websites, Author Celebrity. Jones also claims that I “forced” him to publish 40 other books for free in various emails he has sent to authors attacking me. Truth be told, I only asked him to publish one book for free—the book of Jason Hubal’s who was a disabled young man near death’s door. Jason and his mom, Gracie, invested $8,000.00 at Airleaf for nothing, and Jason was hoping to see his book before he passed on. I told Brien Jones it would be the right thing to do—and he did it. This was the only book I personally requested that he reprint for free.
Although numerous members of our group complained to me about Jones, I told you that we had to focus our campaign on Carl Lau because he was the owner of the company. When I would tell Brien about the complaints, he would always tell me that he was just a worker—in fact a victim too—of Airleaf. He wasn’t even allowed to open the mail. Whatever. In reality, he was the Vice President. He was the one who came up with the schemes. If you look at his promotions now—as many of you do and send them to me—it’s the same promotions as he did at Airleaf. And the promises:
• Weekly calls with progress reports
• Calls to every newspaper, magazine, and radio station in her hometown with a report
• One television appearance including a DVD version
• Three radio interviews including one on a nationally syndicated AM/FM radio show
• Submission of your book to a film producer for review and recommendations
And best of all, Jones Harvest states in their agreement: Each of these commitments is guaranteed. We will not be satisfied until we place your book in bookstores everywhere and you are a celebrity.
Does this sound all too familiar? Well, it’s déjà vu all over again for too many people.
I spoke to an author this week whose books were turned in over a YEAR ago—along with her money--to Jones Harvest and they are still not out or even corrected with galleys. EXCUSES, EXCUSES, EXCUSES are all she is receiving.
Wake up authors—there are no excuses for taking a year to put out a book. My publisher, CCB Publishing (www.CCBPublishing.com) does it in a month—4 weeks--and so does Bob Denton from Mountain Valley Publishing (www.MountainValleyPublishing.com). Both of them provide excellent publishing and distribution services and get your book out for a reasonable amount of money quickly and with integrity. Read the testimonials on their website and see for yourself.
As for the Better Business Bureau rating of Jones Harvest let me say this—when over 50 of our victims sent in complaints to the Indiana BBB about Airleaf, and just weeks prior to the shut down, the BBB was still giving Airleaf a positive rating. I called them a few weeks ago and asked how that happens. The woman explained to me that changing a rating takes time—it could even take more than a year. First, the BBB has to do an investigation which can take months. So, just because someone buys membership into the BBB and pays for the top of the line rating doesn’t mean a thing. Trust me when I tell you the BBB has complaints about Jones Harvest. I know. And so does the Attorney General and U.S. Attorney’s office.
The irony here is that I am being blamed for the future collapse of Jones Harvest. Once again, am I to blame that authors don’t get what they’re promised or pay for? Am I the culprit when people are being misled and lied to? I don’t think so. Quite frankly, I would have been very happy to end my predatory activism days with Airleaf. But too many of you are like my extended family. I will devote my time to any of you who are being burned again. That’s what family is about.
I felt the need to write about this now so that in the future, authors won’t come to me and say why didn’t I warn them earlier. I already feel bad that I’ve kept quiet too long in hopes of things changing for the better. Don’t allow yourselves to fall prey to savvy sales con men who promise you outrageous promises that can’t come true. Always do a thorough check first—or write to me and I’ll do a thorough check for you.
If you have any other companies you would like me to check for you, please write to me any time. Don’t allow yourself to be a victim AGAIN!
Love, Bonnie Kaye