Posted by: kateraidt | December 21, 2009

Free Electric Car – Total Scam!

NOTE: On December 21, 2009 I posted this original blog about my experience briefly working for a guy/company who sold these “free electric cars”. His name and company were mentioned in many comments so it’s no suprise that I received a letter from his attorney on January 16, 2010 to remove all statements from my blog. Since I stand behind my story, I have kept my original post below but have deleted the owner’s name and company name and website from the comments. So now you’ll have to do the research yourself if you want to know who is behind my horror story. So much for Freedom of Speech!

ORIGINAL POST: In 2001, I was called by a trusted ex-collegue to fly to Atlanta for the holidays and sell electric cars. My “friend” and his brother owned the business and several of my other good friends said he and the company were legitimate, so I agreed to join them. There is/was a loophole in tax credits where a fancy golf cart with the right bells and whistles qualifies as a legalized motor vehicle (plates and all) and by purchasing an electric car for $5000, each rich person gets a $5000 tax credit – so at the end of the day the car is free.

Well, here are a few things that went down in Atlanta that makes this company a bunch of scumbags:

1. A week before Christmas someone from the Department of Motor Vehicles called the IRS because mobs of people were coming to the DMV to get plates for their electric vehicles…ahm, golf carts. The IRS said HELL NO, THESE WILL NOT QUALIFY FOR THE TAX CREDIT unless the customers take possession of the cars by December 31st, 2001 – which was going to be impossible. The tax Gods scrambled and re-wrote the tax laws before the endof the year in order for the golf carts to NOT qualify for the tax credit. Many officials came to the location where we were selling to stop telling people that they were going to qualify for a tax credit. Well, my “friend” and his shady brother kept selling them, and insisted that we do the same. Not only did I stop selling them, but I issued a refund to a young couple who came back after hearing the free electric car was a scam. The two brothers cornered me and basically defamed my character for not supporting their scam agenda.

2. The brothers told us (and the customers) that there was an official office and manufacturer in Georgia – about 2 hours away from where we were selling. One of the irate customers did some research and found that this “office” was a storage unit with an address attached the brothers were using.

3. Before the tax Gods and DMV pulled the plug on the free electric car credit, I sold enough cars to earn over $20,000 in commissions. The brothers never paid me a penny. Over the couse of a year, I called and emailed them over 30 times and never received a single solitary response.

Is it possible that the Free Electric Car deal is legitimate in some states and you actually can get a “free” electric vehicle? Possibly. But who in their right mind would want to do business or give their hard-earned money to a bunch of lying, cheating scumbags? Also, if the electric car credit is legitimate on December 21st and you buy your car on that day, but it becomes illegitimate on December 28th – then too bad, you are out that money and won’t get a refund from the car company. That is exactly what happened in Atlanta.

There is far more information I have about this company and the two brothers behind it. If anybody reading this is considering buying a free electric car, then holler at me and I can tell you if it is the came company I had the misfortune of dealing with.

PS…Many people have asked, “If this guy ripped you off, why didn’t you sue him?”

1. At the time, I was part of a very tight knit group of friends and business colleagues who all knew this guy. If I am honest, I will say that for social and political reasons it was not in my best interest to get involved in a lawsuit.
2. I was living in Los Angeles at the time and he was living in Arizona. I was at the peak of my music career traveling the world and having the time of my life. If I had been tied up in a legal battle that crossed state lines I never would have been able to freely travel the world and enjoy my career. I chose to move on with my life and let God take care of this guy. Since he got arrested years later for misleading people in real estate transactions, I know my prayers were answered!

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Responses

  1. Hi,

    I am considering buying an NEV from (website deleted for legal pursoses). It seems legit, are these the people you worked for/with?

    • You might want to do a little reasearch on the owner (name deleted for legal purposes). Last weekend I Googled his name to find that he was busted a few years by the Arizona Attorney General for “deceptive tactics” while operating a real estate/foreclosure relief company. Doesn’t suprise me.

      • Hi, I too was about to buy this car until finding your site and a few blogs raising questions. Thank you for speaking up! They claim to now have the IRS’s blessing via a posted letter that the tax refund is now legit. My concern (above what you wrote) is that the 14-16 weeks until receipt of car(t) extends beyond the timeframe to get a refund from Visa if the company folds or disappears. So my 2 questions: 1) Did everyone back in ’01 receive their carts and just pay 5k for them with no refund? And 2) Has anyone actually received ordered carts under their new marketing push this year? Still sounds like a bit too easy to take a few $mil on advanced orders and run to Bore Bora over the next 16-20 weeks…. Thanks for any response! -B

      • Hi Brad,

        Back in 2001 after the laws were changed, I remember a mass of furious emails going around from the people who had bought these cars. Many threatened to sue the owner and his company. To this day, I don’t know if the customers received refunds or not because my “friend” and his brother never returned any of my emails or phone calls. And none of my colleagues who were in Atlanta with me ever got a straight answer as well. My advice: if the tax credit is legit in your state, buy your electric car from a company who doesn’t have a track record of doing shady business. I have seen websites for a few other electric (fancy golf cart) dealers. Good luck!

      • Thank you Kate! I am going to avoid them based on your warnings, and a friend of mine is now trying to get a visa chargeback for a cart he ‘pre-ordered’ from this co last week. Thx again-

      • I too would like know of anyone that has rec the cart

    • I did purchase a cart, but now I’m having concerns, if I’ll ever see the cart. Before, I purchased I contacted the IRS to confirm the tax credit was valid. They said it was, so that was good news. I called the Better Business Bureau (BBB) in Tucson to inquire on this company. They gave them a positive rating and no complaints in the past 36 months. I was surprised about their shipping charges and then they raised them by $100.00 to each zone, but I went ahead with the purchase. I have now been waiting a week for the paper work to arrive, which they charged me $38.00 for prioroity mailing.

      I read several people have attempted to cancel their orders and are awaiting refunds. I’m not at that point yet, but you are protected, if you purchased by a credit card and didn’t receive the promised goods. It just may take a awhile to receive the credit.

  2. Kate,
    Thanks for sharing. I too was going to purchase an “electric car” from this company. I figured my credit card would have my back if it was never delivered. But doesn’t seem worth the risk now. As they say, if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.
    Alli

  3. Does anyone know of anyone that has received the cart at all.

  4. I hope these guys at (company name and website deleted for legal purposes) get what’s coming to them. I ordered one and then wanted to cancel my order within hours. I called them and they said no problem. Well it was a problem. I kept calling and calling and they kept saying the refund was coming. Well guess what it never did. I finally had to dispute the charge with my bank. I’m sure the Attorney General in AZ is looking at him again.

  5. I can’t imagine working for someone for so long only to not get paid. So shady, especially since you earned the money. Maybe you should have hired an attorney to go after them!

    It irks me when honest people such as yourself get taken for a ride by scumbags.

  6. If anyone is successful getting the credit card money back please publish your tactic. I have tried with American express and have basically failed. Thanks!

  7. I appreciate your comments on this company. Unfortunately I already ordered from them and never received the documents they charged me $38 to “express mail”. Also, at this point, no one is answering the phone at the number posted on their website (not surprising based on your history with them). As a precaution I have filed a dispute with my credit card company and they informed me they should have no problem resolving this within “about 6-8 weeks”. I’ll update as I receive more info.

  8. YOU SAID YOU WERE IN ATLANTA BUT (name of owner and company deleted for legal pursoses).DID THEY MOVE? YOU HAVE THROWN OUT MANY CONCERNS ABOUT THIS COMPANY I HAVE YET TO HERE OF ANYONE NOT RECEIVING THIER CAR OR RECEIVING THIER CAR.PLEASE GIVE MORE INFO. I DID SEE THEM ON JOHN STOSSEL THANKS

    • This company is based in Arizona, but they conduct business in many differnt states. Back in 2001, it happened to be Atlanta (Georgia). I see they were recently in Dallas. Other than that, I’m not sure where else they have done business because I have not been following them since 2001. It was only until recently that I heard they were doing business again (I thought they had ceased business after the 2001 incident – but I was wrong) so I wrote my experience on my blog post. The owner has been active in the real estate world hence his troubles with the Arizona Attorney General’s office. A good friend of mine worked with him many years ago in the real estate venture but quit because he had an experience similar to my experience. Other than my experience in 2001 and my friend’s experience a few years ago, I don’t have much more scoop to share. But I would think this is enough. 🙂

  9. Thanks for sharing!
    There’s some sorry people out there…

  10. FWIW, although it took a while, the company did deliver on the orders, even those submitted as late as Dec 31st.

  11. Kate:

    Any idea which company is actually manufacturing the vehicles they sell? Is it a domestic or international supplier?

    Thanks,

    –Chris


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