Everyone take a step back, keep your eyes and ears open, and use this as a learning experience.
Obviously, this won't be the last time that company reps will come here to spin the facts. This a great chance for us to build our savvy.
Pay attention to Grandpa Cobra's posts, because we can educate ourselves by carefully analyzing his spin. Let the man speak, he's teaching us about spin.
Let's take a look at the court docs, and see what we can learn. Here are some important crux points:
1. FOUND GUILTY vs. PLED GUILTY and "WHAT THE ARTICLE DOESN'T SAY..."
In this post
, Grandpa Cobra says:
Originally Posted by Grandpa Cobra
What this article doesn't say is that anyone in particular was found guilty
Now, wait a minute here. The sentencing document
has three checkboxes at the top of it. One for "pleaded guilty", one for "pleaded nolo contendere" ("no contest"), and one for "was found guilty". The "pleaded guilty" box is checked, because the owner of StreetBeasts pled guilty to fraud. But the "was found guilty" box is not checked. So, Grandpa Cobra says that he wasn't FOUND
guilty. Slick, huh? He also uses a common tactic, the old "What this source doesn't say...". True, the article in the Miami New Times
that he's referencing doesn't exactly mention the guilty verdict. That's like saying: "What the article doesn't say is that John F. Kennedy was ever even assassinated." Technically, it's true: the article
doesn't say that. Common spin tactic. Learn it.
2. FRAUD SCHEME
Now, let's look at the first court doc, the charges against Classic Motor Carriages, to which the owner PLED GUILTY
The court said that CMC "knowingly and willfully" made "false and misleading statements, representations and promises" as to the "quality of the kit car purchased, the delivery time to the customer and the required assembly time". That confirms the scuttlebutt we've heard in the forums about them.
It also says that CMC defrauded customers in an attempt to induce people to mail them a $1,000 to $5,000 deposit. We've heard that one mentioned on the forums too. Also, it says that CMC defrauded people by advising them that the parts necessary to complete their kits were back-ordered, "when in fact, as defendant CMC well knew, the relevant automotive parts were not on back-ordered status".
So, the fraud was perpetrated by misrepresenting the quality of the kits, the delivery time, the assembly time, and the status of back-ordered parts. We've been hearing that, just wanted to clarify that it's in the court docs.
Now, Grandpa Cobra is so defeated, he tries to attack my character. He says that I led him into lies (actually, he led himself), I'll probably edit his posts (that's laughable), I'm attempting to dig up personal information on him (really, I know his full name, but haven't revealed it), etc. In fact, I looked at the court docs, and mentioned it in this post
. That wasn't enough for him, and, in this post
, he says that I still haven't "proved that anyone was ever busted for massive fraud". So, now I've posted the court docs. There's the proof.
JGK95 makes a point about first-person experience, and it's valid, because Streetbeast customers have the closest perspective. However, to propose that ONLY those who have built a Streetbeast car have the right to comment on their business practices (not sure if he's saying exactly that) is, IMO, incorrect. I have experience with how they're spinning this forum, so I think I can comment on it. The judge in the case (assumedly) was not a Streetbeast customer, but he analyzed the facts, and made a judgement. People who have seen their cars can comment on the aesthetics. Etc.
3. SILENCING CRITICISM
It's important to realize that Grandpa Cobra and StreetbeastOpts man are here to silence us. We all saw how they tried to spin us with the old "Streetbeast bought the molds from CMC" line, when, really, both companies were owned by the same guy. Imagine if you did a crappy restoration on a car, and then "sold" it to yourself, and then tried to tell people that you "bought it" from someone who did crappy work. Same deal. Hilarious.
Now, in this post
, StreetbeastOptsMan threatens Centerline with a lawsuit. He says:
Originally Posted by StreetbeastOptsMan
I dont think you have enough equity in those cars you own to withstand a Civil Liable Lawsuit , if I were you Id pull the plug on this thread immediately and walk away, and remove the Wiki site from your main page , let people find it on their own
Interesting. He's threatening legal action, and he's threatening to do financial damage to him, if he doesn't stop shining the light on their actions.
Guess what? They tried the same thing with Stuart Rado, the consumer activist who exposed them. Check out this court document
, page 7. Keep in mind that "GGL" refers to George G. Levin Industries, AKA Streetbeasts, AKA Classic Motor Carriages AKA Fiberfab/Auto Resolutions/Innovative Street Machines. Here's the quoted text:
Originally Posted by USA v. GGL, Motion to Allow Victim/Witness Allocution
GGL's fraudulent scheme necessarily included as an intricate part the silencing of its critics, among whom was Rado. It did this by using the Courts to intimidate Rado into being silent and causing Rado to spend money he could not afford. It was GGL's intention (as one of GGL's attorneys said to Rado in the deposition of Rado in 1994) to make Rado's net worth go South. GGL and its attorneys forced Rado to incur these expenses and live day-to-day with a barrage of pleadings, depositions, and other legal maneuvers of GGL. He had to endure this even though he did nothing legally wrong, and even though GGL was in fact at the same time continuing to perpetrate its nationwide fraud. Rado was being put through this because Rado dared to contact some of GGL's victions and tell them that if they were injured by GGL they should contact the Florida Attorney General for help. What is even more despicable is that GGL knew that Rado was dying of cancer but continued to pursue him with motions and notices of trial and other pleadings, one such notice of hearing being served within days of brain surgery.
Same intimidation tactics: legal and financial ruin. Also, recall what StreetbeastOptsMan put into the wiki article? A link to the revision (before we edited it out) is here
. He said:
Originally Posted by StreetbeastOptsMan in the wiki
I ordered a kit from streetbeast 5 years ago and have been paying on the layaway plan, last year I had about $2000 left to pay and was diagnosed with cancer, those saints at streetbeast forgave what I owed and shipped my dream car (34 Coupe) right away so I could build and drive it with my wife before I passed, God Bless Street Beast
It's interesting to see how StreetBeasts REALLY treats people who are dying of cancer.
Lots more to learn here, and I'm sure it will all come out in in the wiki article
God Bless the saints at Streetbeasts!