Monday, July 14, 2014

Bags of Cash Are a Bad Deal, Tennessee

The scammers at Arthur Middleton Capitol Holdings and the World Reserve Monetary Exchange are at it again. This may be the closest thing to a bald-faced lie I've seen from them to date:

Yes, the headline says "Bags of Cash Go to Residents in 92 TN Counties." The italic text below that says the bags are "loaded" with "real U.S. Gov't issued money" and all you have to do is cover a $99 Vault Bag fee. Within a time limit of three days, of course. Act now!

Ninety-nine dollars for a Vault Bag fee (plus shipping and handling). How much money is in these bags? They seem to be bulging with bills, based on the photo at the top of the ad that shows an armed and serious Toronto Mayor Doug Ford.

Well, if you read the fine print, you get eight $2 bills and three $1 bills. That's $19 of face value for your $99 payment.

Some of the bills are uncut, which the WRME likes to pretend makes them more valuable, and a few others have a red seal or a blue seal. Seems unlikely to be worth anything like the $80 difference in cost, and the ad copy obscures this with the usual hand-waving about how "there's no telling how much just one of these rarely seen bills could be worth some day..."

The small disclaimer at the bottom of the page makes it clear WRME is implies no such statement of fact, of course.

That's all bad enough, but the illustration of various denominations at lower right is the biggest misdirection of all. It shows a sheet of four $50 bills, plus sheets of $5, $10, and $20 bills and a single $100 bill.

None of these are included in the "vault packs" because they aren't marked with a white star. Above the images, the ad says "All 11 U.S. Gov't issued notes with white stars are in each Vault Bag." And then it says "But only residents who beat the deadline are getting every single U.S. note shown below by covering the additional claim fee within the next 3 days."

That last sentence is completely unclear to me. Are they saying that paying an additional fee (beyond $99, plus shipping and handling) will get you the uncut $50s and other larger bills shown, which would have a face value of over $400? If so, how much is that "additional claim fee"? The ad doesn't say.

Or do the words "every single U.S note shown below" still mean only the ones with the white stars, and the additional claim fee refers to the same $99 fee? In my opinion, they want it to be unclear, so that people think they will get all the bills shown.

My advice to anyone who reads this ad is to buy nothing and to complain to your local paper about the fact that they ran it in the first place.


Gina said...

My jaw dropped. I've not seen anything like this ad before. It certainly takes uncommon chutzpah to do an ad like this much less run it in a newspaper. I wonder how much the full page ad cost to run? They are clearly expecting a lot of takers.

I remember getting on a city bus several years ago and seeing a bill on the floor about the same time another woman saw it. She picked it up, looked at it, and held it out to me. It was a $1 million dollar bill with Grover Cleveland on it. The paper was very stiff. I started laughing. The woman asked me in a heavily accented voice why I laughed. I told her it was fake, no such thing as a $1 million dollar bill. I brought it home, though, and it hangs on my fridge door.....

Daughter Number Three said...

In my past post (the one that's linked at the beginning to Arthur Middleton Capital Holdings), I talk about how they pay for these ads.

I am perpetually distressed by the fact that their ongoing ability to pay for them indicates they make money off the fools who fall for the ads.