NewsChannel 11 Investigates Chain Letter Scheme - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock


NewsChannel 11 Investigates Chain Letter Scheme

Jerry Nesmith got a letter in the mail a couple of weeks ago. "It was asking me to send six people $1 apiece, add my name to the list, then in turn I'm supposed to get a bunch of money from all over the country," explained Jerry.

The headline of the letter was this: As seen on Oprah that this was a quick and legal way to make lots of money anywhere from $250,000 to $813,000.  And who wouldn't believe something like this when Oprah's name is on it, not to mention the name of the person who supposedly created the letter is Phillip A. Brown, Attorney at Law. But, Jerry just wasn't buying into it.  "I kinda work off that old saying, if it's too good to be true it probably is," he said.

When Jerry contacted NewsChannel 11 about the letter we took a closer look at it. There was a list of six names of people from all over the U.S. These are the people Jerry was instructed to send a dollar.  So if they're on the list that only means they could be participants of this chain letter scheme. We called everybody on the list and reached Patsy Felicitas of Round Rock, which is north of Austin. "We believed in it. It was about people helping people," said Patsy. 

Back in April, Patsy and her husband made 200 copies of these four pages.  They spent money on stamps and to top that off they purchased a list of mailing addresses from a publishing company and sent them all out to hundreds of people. So far, they've only made $6. "We had to pay $47 for the mailing list, we spent $184 on envelopes and stamps we spent close to $200," said Patsy. 

As for Jerry, he hasn't sent any money. "It doesn't make good arithmetic, when you just think people from all over the country are just dying to send you money," said Jerry. "I just don't see it that way," said Jerry. 

And even though Patsy did get some money in the mail, "(it's) not worth your time or money. I would not do it.  We learned the hard way," said Patsy.

We took this letter to the Better Business Bureau which confirmed this was a "work from home" scheme in the form of a chain letter. We're not sure who this Phillip A. Brown Attorney at Law is but we know we weren't able to find him on the Internet, except on a website that indicated this was a scam letter.

If you get this letter, which is possible, you may just throw it away.

The Better Business Bureau
For more information on consumer guidance, business guidance, dispute resolution, and consumer news and alerts; click here to goto the Better Business Bureau's web site.

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