ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE RECEIVER - March 3, 2014
Since my appointment as Receiver, I have said that I intended to investigate and file legal actions against those who created and operated the ZeekRewards scheme and to pursue claims to recover the money paid to the scheme’s net winners. After careful analysis of Rex Venture Group’s (“RVG”) written and electronic records, the review of hundreds of thousands of documents and numerous interviews with relevant witnesses, on Friday, February 28th, I filed lawsuits in the United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina to achieve both those goals. The Complaints are public records, and copies of both Complaints have been posted to the website.
Both actions describe in detail the ZeekRewards Ponzi and pyramid scheme and how it was operated from January 2011 to August 2012. In the scheme, over 700,000 participants lost over $700 million dollars. The first action, Kenneth D. Bell v. Paul Burks, Dawn Wright-Olivares, Daniel Olivares, the estate of Roger Plyler, Alexandre de Brantes and Darryle Douglas, Civil Action No. 3:14-cv-89 asserts claims for breach of fiduciary duty, unjust enrichment, the return of fraudulent transfers and other claims against six of the scheme’s insiders. It asks the Court to order the defendants to repay the losses caused by their unlawful conduct and return the money RVG paid them.
The second action, Kenneth D. Bell v. Todd Disner, et al., Civil Action No. 3:14-cv-91, makes claims against more than 10 of ZeekRewards’ largest “net winners” in the United States asking that the Court order them to repay the net winnings they received from the scheme. Each of the named defendants won in excess of $900,000 (either individually or together with another family member or through their shell corporation). As described in detail in the lawsuit, because ZeekRewards’ net winners “won” (the victims’) money in an unlawful Ponzi and pyramid scheme, they are not permitted to keep their winnings and must return the fraudulently transferred winnings back to the Receiver for distribution to Zeek’s victims.
This second action also includes class action claims against approximately 9,000 ZeekRewards net winners in the United States who each won more than $1,000 in ZeekRewards (claims against net winners outside the U.S. will be pursued in future actions). The total amount won by these net winners exceeds $200 million. As explained in the Complaint, the law permits the Receiver to bring claims against a class of defendants where the underlying facts and legal issues are similar against the members of the class – like in this case where they all won money in ZeekRewards. The Receiver has asked that the Court appoint the largest net winners sued by name as class representatives because they will, by virtue of their own defense to the same claims, be adequate and appropriate representatives for the rest of the net winner class. A list of those individuals whom the Receiver believes won more than $1,000 and therefore would be included in the class can be found here. If you are on the list, you are not required to do anything at this time, although you may, of course, discuss this matter with legal counsel if you choose to do so. However, I do ask all those on the list to complete a short contact information form so that those persons can be promptly notified of important information as the case moves forward.
As discussed above, the goal of the lawsuit against net winners is simply to obtain the return of the money paid out to net winners in excess of the amount of money they paid to RVG. Previously, I have offered to discuss settlement of the Receiver’s claims against net winners in an effort to recover this money without the need for litigation. The Court has approved over 175 settlement agreements, with many allowing the repayment of the settlement amount over time on a negotiated payment schedule. Although litigation against net winners has now begun, and I intend to pursue it vigorously to obtain Judgments, including interest, against all defendants and class members, I remain willing to settle the Receiver’s claims with those willing to repay a significant portion of their net winnings. Net winners who want to discuss settlement should indicate their interest by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am and have been grateful for the continuing support and patience of affiliate victims.
UPDATE FROM RECEIVER – January 18, 2014
We have recently added a link on Zeekrewardsreceivership.com that will allow you to check the status of any timely, fully submitted claim(s) that you filed through the Claims Portal (the “Status Check Link”). The Status Check Link can be accessed at the following address: https://cert.gardencitygroup.com/zrwdet/fs/home. The Status Check Link will allow you to log in to a webpage using the userid and password you selected when you registered on the Claim Portal. After logging into the Status Check Link, you will be brought to a webpage that will inform you whether your claim determination has been issued and will also permit you to confirm or update your contact information, as necessary. Please make sure that any contact information that you submitted is up to date so that when a claim determination for your claim is completed, you will receive notice that your claim determination has been completed. If your claim has been determined, upon logging in, you will be prompted to review your claim determination.
If, after logging in, the Status Check Link shows that your claim has not yet been determined, please be patient. We are working hard to determine all fully submitted claims of Affiliates as quickly as possible. Please do not call or email me to request the status of your claim as this will slow the claim determination process for all parties. Moreover, all entities making such requests will, to the extent they receive a response from the Receivership Team, be directed to the Status Check Link to obtain such status.
If you cannot log in after following the Status Check Link because you cannot remember your userid or password, you will be able to recover these items from the website.
If you receive the following message, it indicates we do not believe you finally submitted a timely claim:
We have located the account associated with the Registration ID and password which you have tried to use to log in to check the status of a claim. However, our records indicate that no claim was finally submitted for this Registration ID.
Before contacting the Receivership Team however, please confirm that you do not have a separate Registration ID under which you have filed a completed claim by clicking on the link below and selecting “Forgot Registration ID” and entering the email address that you have used to register. An email will be sent to the email address which you provide and that email will contain a list of Registration IDs associated with that email address.
If you believe this is an error, please contact us through the address listed in that message and we will evaluate your assertion.
If you filed a claim by an alternative method approved by me in writing, you will receive your claim determination through a paper submission.
Finally, we wanted to update you on the claims reconciliation process. We are nearing the completion of the determination of more than 40,000 additional Affiliate claims. These claim determinations will be finalized in the next few weeks and will be sent out in large groups. We will continue to send email notices of determination to all individuals holding such claims. Please check to see if your claim has been determined using the Status Check Link listed above.
Thank you again for your patience and support in this process.
Kenneth D. Bell
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