Companies That Sue Critics Have Something to Hide

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I am a firm believer that companies that sue critics (whether the critics are journalists, customers, forensic accountants, or otherwise) have something to hide.

This was the case with Medifast Inc., a multi-level marketing company that sued me (and others) for $270 million nearly five years ago. (They suffered a resounding loss against me, lost again on appeal, and now must pay my substantial attorneys fees… which of course they are claiming are inflated…. disregarding the fact that huge fees are a result of the need to defend against their shady litigation tactics.) Medifast didn’t like the fact that I expressed my opinion of its business model and business practices.

Other companies have tried such tactics: Continue reading

Mark Shurtleff Arrested by FBI and Charged With Bribery and Other Felonies

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mark-shurtleff-mugshotBack in 2008, I wrote several articles about the suspicious activities of Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff. Specifically, I questioned the campaign contributions her received from Pre-Paid Legal Services (now Legal Shield), a company that I suggested was a thinly veiled pyramid scheme. I also criticized campaign contributions from Overstock.com.  Then there was the whole thing with DigitalBridge.

It took some time, but it appears that the law may have caught up with former Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff at last. Mark Shurtleff was arrested this morning along with another former Utah Attorney General, John Swallow.

According to the Salt Lake Tribune: Continue reading

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff: More Suspect Campaign Contributions

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This isn’t the first time (and won’t be the last time) that a contribution to Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff’s campaign fund is followed by questionable activity. The latest allegations of impropriety involve  a computer consulting company called DigitalBridge.

On September 29, 2008, AG Shurtleff wrote a letter on his office’s letterhead to the National Association of Attorneys General, endorsing the services of DigitalBridge and providing the company’s contact information. This doesn’t sound like a big deal unless you consider that on September 18, 2008, DigitalBridge made a $10,000 contribution to Shurtleff’s campaign. Continue reading

When Money Talks, Mark Shurtleff Listens

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How much does it cost to get Mark Shurtleff, Utah’s Attorney General, to lie for you? Apparently only $5,000. What a bargain!

Today Sam Antar has an enlightening piece on his blog, entitled “Overstock.com (NASDAQ: OSTK) CEO Patrick Byrne Pays Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff to Defame a Blogger.” It details a situation in which a $5,000 Overstock.com campaign contribution to Shurtleff was followed immediately by public lies by Shurtleff. And there’s plenty of evidence to support the claim that Shurtleff blatantly lied. Continue reading

More Interesting Mark Shurtleff News

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Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff keeps providing interesting material for bloggers. Two weeks ago I wrote about the campaign contributions Shurtleff receives from multi-level marketing companies (MLMs) like Usana Health Sciences (NASDAQ:USNA) and Pre-Paid Legal (NYSE:PPD), and his support for weakening laws against pyramid schemes in Utah. This is important because it is my contention that most MLMs are pyramid schemes in disguise, and that the government can and should enforce anti-pyramiding laws against them.

And of course, there was the whole situation in which Shurtleff lied about Sam Antar. Sam’s a convicted felon who travels around the country (on his own dime) educating accountants, investigators, and lawyers about corporate fraud from the perspective of a reformed criminal. He does this simply as a public service. Continue reading

Supporting Pyramid Schemes is Lucrative for Politicians

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As Barry Minkow (Fraud Discovery Institute), Dr. Jon Taylor, Robert FitzPatrick, Eric Scheibeler and others (including me) continue the unpopular fight against multi-level marketing companies (which are nothing more than disguised pyramid schemes), I occasionally come across items of interest…

Like this one. Did you know that Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff has received tens of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from Pre-Paid Legal Services (NYSE:PPD)? He has. Continue reading

Posts Containing Information About Mark Shurtleff

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To make it easier for those of you have been searching for information on Mark Shurtleff, the Utah Attorney General who endorses multi-level marketing company Usana and engages in other sketchy stuff, I provide this list of links:

Utah Attorney General improperly endorsing Usana Health Sciences

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff endorses Usana Health Sciences

Yesterda’s Press Release by Overstock.com on Sam Antar and the Utah Attorney General’s Office

Update on Mark Shurtleff’s comments from Sam Antar’s blog

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff: No apology for Sam Antar

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff Endorses Company Committing Fraud

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Did I ever mention that the Attorney General of Utah, Mark Shurtleff publicly endorsed Usana Health Sciences (NASDAQ:USNA) and said the company operates in a legal fashion? Oh yeah, that’s right… I did. Well then, let’s review.

Usana executives have been caught making numerous misrepresentations about the “business opportunity,” company executives, and other company representatives. The company has recently been exposed for violating the laws of China – where company employees at the company’s Hong Kong office teach people exactly how to violate the Chinese laws against multi-level marketing. Continue reading

Update on Mark Shurtleff’s Comments From Sam Antar’s Blog

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Sam Antar posted this on his blog today regarding Mark Shurtleff’s letter about Sam. He says he just received notification from blogger.com TODAY that there was a comment waiting for approval by him. I reiterate my earlier concern: Why didn’t Shurtleff contact him directly via phone or email?

Blog Update Note (11/15/07): I received the following request from Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff to post a comment on my blog today. In a letter addressed to “to whom it may concern,” dated November 8, 2007, written by Mark Shurtleff, Utah Attorney General, and released by Overstock.com through a press release on November 14, 2007, he claimed: Continue reading