An investigation launched by Kaieteur News revealed shocking tales pertaining to a massive DirecTV scam which was allegedly being carried out by an individual.
After an article was published on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 in the Kaieteur News about two customers who suffered hundreds of thousands of dollars in combined losses, this publication was able to track down several other persons who were former customers of the said individual, and the stories they told were nothing short of shocking.
Well, I have made contact with several of this individual’s former customers and they told me shocking tales. One customer, Shivram, from the Upper Corentyne area told this newspaper that he joined the services of Status Investments in July 2009. He paid down a sum of $130,000 to the individual, and after a few weeks, his service was being disrupted intermittently. He said that he has since abandoned any hope of getting back his money, since he realises it is a losing battle.
Another customer who got ripped- off, named Seeta from Corriverton, Berbice said, and “The individual robbed me one year, my uncle one year, and someone else for six months.
She said that in January last year, she paid him over $144,000 for the receiver and subscription for one year. She only received two months service.
“He’s not an easy person to deal with,” she stated. She also said that she was robbed by another person named with a similar motive, selling DirecTV services. Seeta said that as far as she was concerned, no one could help her, not even the law.
But maybe one of the most startling accounts this newspaper received came from a former customer who resides at Cotton Tree Village on the West Coast of Berbice.
The customer, Savitrie, purchased the DirecTV Service in January, 2009. She said that immediately after the day she called to enquire about the service and package, a car load of workmen turned up at her home.
She said that she even had to pay for the taxi from Georgetown to Cotton Tree. She paid $141,000 for one year and collected a receipt. She said that the channels were on until April when they were cut off.
She telephoned and got a shock of her life, when told the $141,000 for the dish and receiver was stolen from him and his business and that the individual was no longer under his employ.
Savitree said that he further told her that if she wanted her service back, that she would have to pay him more cash – $125,000 of it. She said that a few days later, he arrived at her home himself and she signed away $125,000, money which would ultimately go down the drain.
“He signed the receipt, and I advanced him three months for BBC and Zee TV with another $20,000, but after just five weeks all of them cut off”, she said. The former customer said that the service was down from April to July. She said that she started to call him.
He told her that her receiver had a problem and that she would need a new one at a cost of $30,000.
He sent a receiver to her, but upon examining the box, Savitree said that there was no wire inside. She did not surrender the fee. And that was the end of all her spending and ultimately her relationship with the con-man.
“God will deal with him,” she said. “You see how his fingers like cripple?”
One customer from East Berbice said that the individual, at one time, wanted to make a deal with him. The deal was that he would make the customer a DirecTV agent for him in Berbice. He would have supplied all the dishes and receivers, and would receive a substantial commission for every new customer he gets.
All of this would only be possible if the customer lodged at least $100,000 into the individual’s bank account. The customer said that he thought about it but did not do it because he realised something was amiss.
This newspaper understands that all of the individual’s customers sooner or later switched to Galaxy Entertainment DirecTV service based in Georgetown. When this letter writer contacted Galaxy, they stated that persons who experienced the rip- off from the con-man have switched to their service.
They said that they provide the best DirecTV service, 100% better than the con-man’s.
They also stated that they have a direct link and connection with the authorised DirecTV offices in Caracas, Venezuela and that no customer ever had any problems similar to those of Status Investments.
Meanwhile, many are at a loss as to how come the law enforcement authorities have failed to investigate the matter, after now discovering that the scam affected a wide section of the Berbice population. Many of the customers contacted stated that they have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars at the hands of an individual whom they should’ve known better of.
However, they stated that this should not excuse them from having the justice they deserve, and seemed peeved at the fact that the individual is still at large today, to prey on more naïve and trusting Guyanese and more particularly Berbicians.
Leon Jameson Suseran
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