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Better Business Bureau ®
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Wisconsin
Gifting Clubs Can Be Pyramid Scams
March 08, 2010
The Better Business Bureau of East Alabama, West & Southwest Georgia has received complaints regarding a "Gifting Club" operating under the name Elite Activity is actually a pyramid scam.

In recent months the Better Business Bureau has experienced activity in regards to “Gifting Club Recruitment,” in the Columbus, GA area. The group operates as Elite Activity and has been using a website named “Eliteactivityresurected.org.” It appears to have originated in Texas. One of the methods used by the group as a recruiting process is appealing to religious congregations and/or any organization where participants can be gathered quickly.

The club has a history of starting-up, disappearing and then reappearing in different areas of the US as operators of this scam attempt to rebuild the pyramid and scam more people out of their money. Better Business Bureaus and Attorney Generals in several states have taken action. In one such case, in Houston, Texas, the founder, Harvey Joseph Dockstader was sentenced to two years in prison. Reportedly his incarceration is to end in May of 2010.

The Better Business Bureau advises that participating in these types of pyramid schemes is illegal and advises anyone considering joining a “Gifting Club” or Program to check with the Better Business Bureau before sending money to a group. The Federal Trade Commission has produced a Consumer Alert titled “When is a gift not a gift? When it’s a gotcha.”, a copy of this alert can be found at this link at the following URL:

http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/alerts/alt056.shtm

For more information on Pyramid schemes contact the BBB.