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  • Report: #397662

Complaint Review: Valerie Hawk Hoffman, Valerie Hoffman, David Hoffman

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  • Submitted: Wed, December 03, 2008
  • Updated: Wed, January 30, 2013

  • Reported By:Sea Girt New Jersey
Valerie Hawk Hoffman, Valerie Hoffman, David Hoffman
869 Summer Harbor Rd Winter Harbor, Maine U.S.A.

Valerie Hawk Hoffman, Valerie Hoffman, David Hoffman Previously owned business in CT being sued by CT Attorney General for deceptive business practices Winter Harbor Maine

*Consumer Comment: Re: Mention of David Hoffman in Ripoff Report Posting

*Consumer Comment: woman claims she never has been sued perfect person

*Consumer Comment: My friend received a huge order from them-this herb co is terrific-get over your insecurity Etsy girls or you too could be sued for defamation like the other Etsy gal is!

*General Comment: I was also scammed

*Consumer Comment: well Valerie why haven't you returned goods?

*Consumer Comment: Fresh is a terrific company and orders products from my brother all the time!

*General Comment: freshherbsandteas owner is a con artist

*General Comment: Rock on Ms Hoffman Your Herbs are Life Savers and We love your Tv Shows! You Care and Thats Rare.

*Consumer Comment: Actually get the facts right-the Hoffmans are suing the AG-you have it backwards!

*General Comment: The Judge Sided with Val-Good Job Val You Stood Up for your Rights! You will win a fortune I bet!!

*Author of original report: REBUTTALS TO MY RIPOFF REPORT ARE A SCAM BY VALERIE HAWK HOFFMAN

*Consumer Comment: freshherbsandteas.com scam

*Consumer Comment: Great company-their herbs saved my life! Love them!

*Consumer Comment: Great company-their herbs saved my life! Love them!

*Consumer Suggestion: I am admitting the Hoffman's were RIGHT and I am SORRY I ever judged them-good for them suing back!! Good people-treated WRONG

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This couple, Valerie and David Hoffman have a history of deceptive business practices specifically with their previous internet business: Sage Advice Herbs aka Sunrise Herb Farm, which was run from their then home in CT. This is not just my opinion -- the CT Attorney General's office has an ongoing lawsuit against Valerie Hoffman and press articles about their suit against her have been published in many CT newspapers. These people are internet thieves.

I am only one of hundreds (possibly thousands) of internet customers who were scammed by Valerie Hoffman and her Sunrise Herb Farm "business". I filed a complaint with the CT AG's office and I have been assured by them that one day I will get restitution for the money Ms Hoffman scammed from me. In fact I was contacted by the CT AG's office only last week to let me know the case is scheduled for trial in mid-December. Apparently Ms. Hoffman is so arrogant that she believes she will fight the AG in court rather than agree to make restitution to the hundreds of unwitting consumers she defrauded during the past few years. The AG's office has hundreds of consumers who were scammed by Valerie Hoffman willing and able to testify against her in court.

I hope Ms. Hoffman is aware that the AG's office can levy a fine on her of $5,000 per incident, plus require restitution if she loses this case -- hopefully that would be enough to wipe her out and maybe she might have to sell the oceanfront house in Maine she purchased with the money she stole from consumers via her internet business.

I just want to clarify that the lawsuit and the complaints against Ms. Hoffman and Sunrise Herb Farm have nothing to do with the product she sold -- it pertains to a businesss practice she carried out in which she obtained a customer's credit card account # or debit card account # and then continued to charge these accounts for merchandise until the customers realized what was happening and had to close out the credit card and debit card accounts in order to stop the withdrawals or charges to their accounts. The Attorney General's office has stated that in some cases she charged/withdrew thousands of dollars from individual consumers' accounts. In my case I realized what was happening pretty quickly into the process and only lost about $400.00.

Bottom line is the Hoffmans are bad people who should be stopped from conducting any type of business and it seems as though this "oceanfront rental" business is par for the course with them -- just another scam!

Janis P.
Sea Girt, New Jersey
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/03/2008 09:54 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Valerie-Hawk-Hoffman-Valerie-Hoffman-David-Hoffman/Winter-Harbor-Maine-04693/Valerie-Hawk-Hoffman-Valerie-Hoffman-David-Hoffman-Previously-owned-business-in-CT-being-397662. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
1Author 14Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

Re: Mention of David Hoffman in Ripoff Report Posting

AUTHOR: Judy - (United States of America)

On Dec 3, 2008, I submitted a posting in which included references to David Hoffman.  When I submitted that posting, I did not have personal knowledge of the references that I made about David Hoffman.



My comments should have been limited to my personal knowledge and, therefore, should not have included references to David Hoffman.  Anyone reading my posting should read it as though David Hoffman was not mentioned in it.
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#2 Consumer Comment

woman claims she never has been sued perfect person

AUTHOR: zack - (United States of America)

THIS WOMAN CLAIMS SHE HAS NEVER BEEN SUED, NEVER SUED ANYONE, SHE SURE HAS EVERYONE FOOLED, RUNNING HER SAME SCHEMES, SHE DIVORCED HER HUSBAND MARRIED A YOUNGER MAN, AND I BELIEVE WHATEVER ONE SAYS ABOUT HER, IF SHE HAS RIPOFF THIS MANY  PEOPLE, I SUPPOSE HER FANCY NEW SPORTS CAR AND HER EVERY OTHER THING WILL BE TAKEN ALONG WITH ALL THE LAWSUITS.

WISH YOU LOOK MS,  OR EXCUSE ME MRS. FUREY, NOT HOFFMAN ANYMORE.AS TO THE OTHER REBUTTAL ON THE INTERNET VALERIE SAID SHE COULD SUE FOR THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS FOR A COUPLE SAYING SHE USED THEIR CREDIT CARD. AND VALERIE WAS THE ONE TO REBUTTAL THE COMMENT, VALERIE, THESE PEOPLE HAVE A RIGHT UNDER THE SITE TO VOICE HIS OR HER'S OPINION, ITS CALLED FREEDOM OF SPEECH. READ THE SITES, PRIVACY AND USAGE YOU VALERIE CAN'T DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT.

GOOD LUCK
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#3 Consumer Comment

My friend received a huge order from them-this herb co is terrific-get over your insecurity Etsy girls or you too could be sued for defamation like the other Etsy gal is!

AUTHOR: Rock On - (United States of America)

Well I thought I should mention two things I just read- V Hoffman just filed a large suit against this gal Judy P for her disgusting defamation, so I would probably keep my mouth shut people with your nasty words as this wonderful couple is terrific as thousands have mentioned! If you read what this woman wrote she clearly has got the "green eyed monster" going as the other writer said as she keeps mentioning Mr Hoffmans beautiful home and Ms Hoffmans tv show success! I don't blame them for suing as who wouldn't be sick of this nonsense written. I am a corporate CEO and get samples all the time! My friend runs a large company in New Mexico and gets so many samples they have a entire dept that handles them. Etsy is clearly a group of naive "new to the business world" sellers and very childish to boot. Just because your products did not get chosen stop being so resentful and move on or you could find yourself we with a lawsuit as well. I told my friend about this terrific company and she got such a gigantic order from them that it changed her company forever and now Fresh has ordered 4 more times, they love their product so much. The company has been around for like 25 years duh! they are obviously ordering products you stupid fools...get a life!
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#4 General Comment

I was also scammed

AUTHOR: Etsy Seller - (United States of America)

I was scammed by this woman also. I am a seller with etsy.com and have sold and bought hundreds of items without any problems. Until one day I was contacted by the purchasing department of Fresh inc.

The story is that same that I have heard all over etsy. This person contacts me for a sample of my product with the idea that someone in her company will look at it and let me know about ordering 40-50 of them to give to their clients as a gift at an appreciation party in February.

This person needs the sample sent right away so that it can be reviewed and the order could be placed. I was assured that my sample would be sent back if it wasn't chosen for their gifts. We even discussed a pricing break for the bulk order. When I told them that they would have to purchase the sample "I sell for $50 plus shipping" they got a bit defensive and said "do you know what kind of opportunity this is?"

I am no different than many sellers on etsy. I do this out of my home and it is a supplemental income for me. I barely make over minimum wage at my full time job and have two other part time jobs besides what I do on etsy just to pay my bills and put food on the table. For someone to offer me something like that is an exciting thing for me. So I took a chance and sent a sample without collecting any money upfront for it.

So when I tried to contact this person after shipping the item out, I got no response. The username that I was convoing with now was no longer a valid user. And I never heard from Fresh inc again. It has now been a month and a half since I sent the sample.

I believe that the person responsible for ripping off innocent etsy sellers, just trying to make the world a better place be selling handmade, should be accountable for this.

I believe in Karma, and I think that this person will get what is coming to them, if not legally, then some how.

Advice to anyone that googled this, don't send anything to this company and don't even respond, they don't deserve your time or energy.
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#5 Consumer Comment

well Valerie why haven't you returned goods?

AUTHOR: etsyseller - (USA)

If you feel etsy is a crappy marketplace (which it most certainly isn't) then why do you not return the tons of free samples you conned out of these sellers?

In this site, rip-off reports, you trashed an innocent seller and have never even purchased from her or even seen her products, other than a photo, when she decided NOT to send you a free handmade jewelry sample.  When you had contacted her previously, you had nothing but  prasie for her jewelry calling it "beautiful, well made, etc."  Then you defame her shop, her work, and the seller personally.

Shame shame shame on you.

I hope the court system, the CT AG,  will stop you from ripping off people for good, first with your teas and herbs, and then with sellers whom you solicit free expensive samples.

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#6 Consumer Comment

Fresh is a terrific company and orders products from my brother all the time!

AUTHOR: Rock On - (United States of America)

The company has been in business for 20 years obviously they are ordering products from somewhere, moron. Obviously this Etsy weirdo is upset her product was not good enough quality and the company did not want it. Fresh owners are way too busy to care about silly free items I have seen on that site. Get with it people-spend your time better.
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#7 General Comment

freshherbsandteas owner is a con artist

AUTHOR: etsyseller - (USA)

Valerie Hawk Hoffman has been trolling our online global handmade marketplace, etsy.com, for many months, soliciting a slew of sellers for free samples with promises of a huge order to follow.  She has asked for approximately $40 worth of free samples per seller, including handmade soaps, foods, hand screened tees (she asked one seller to send her 8 tees in size medium as a free sample), trail mixes, spices, clothing, knitwear, one-of-a-kind handmade dolls, jewelry, candy, and many other items.

She lures sellers by stating she intends to place a huge paid order--as gifts for 40-50 of her influential clients at $40 per person--subject to review.  She claims she will return all samples to a seller if the purchasing dept. of her company decides they will not buy the massive order.  She tells the sellers to check a box on her website http://freshherbsandteas.com if they want their samples returned.

The problem is she does NOT return any samples (which are worth about $40 per seller) nor does she return any emails that are sent inquiring about the samples.  In other words, the sellers send expensive free samples of all kinds of things and never hear from her again.  It's all a big con to get as much FREE stuff as possible.

Etsy is comprised of indie artisan sellers from all around the world who make a few hundred a year if they are lucky.  There are over a million sellers.

If she gets turned down for a sample, she defames sellers on different web blogs and sites, including this one ripoffreports, writing extremely nasty things about the seller and his/her goods, calling the stuff horrible, badly made, etc. sometimes without even having seen the seller's products (like she claimed on this website).

Why take advantage of all these starvin' artists?  Who knows.  Most of our sellers are women with young kids.  It is utterly shameful.

She has received tons of FREE stuff to use for herself. 

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#8 General Comment

Rock on Ms Hoffman Your Herbs are Life Savers and We love your Tv Shows! You Care and Thats Rare.

AUTHOR: Rock On - (United States of America)

Rock On Hoffmans-We here are so darn happy for all you do for animal protection, the earth and our loved ones. My wife lost 40 lbs because of your fabulosa herbs and I solved a big pain in back that I had from my job, my mom uses your memory formula and thinks you are a goddess sweetie. I started listening to you on the radio and tv more than 9 years back-you sure are a super star ( cutie too! ).


You also care and thats rare.


This pathetic chick ( notice it was all the same lady who wrote the nasty crap about you each time and out of probably like a million clients who cares what she thinks ) is a total loud mouth and as the other reader said just looking to break your policy and get free bucks. Sure she gets a call, want free money from these AG tools naturally she will say yes, yes, yes but what she doesnt know is she will have to lie to get it and that will get her in big trouble. When she gets her ass on the stand she sure wont say she wasnt told she was signing up for more than one shipment as she then would be in trouble for perjury as I read one of the AG guys may be! I also read that lonely one lady who showed up in court practically started sobbing Vals lawyer ripped her up so bad! She sure didnt like the truth slapped back her did she? 


Yep, Blumenthal was voted the Worst AG in the entire nation that writer is corrrect-here is the details from the newspaper. I was ill when I read this about this guy. Go home lady, Val is wonderful and in a sentence you and your diarrhea of the mouth you seem to have from Seagirt is getting you in trouble too-I hope Val does sue you too! Yep, green eyed monster at work thats obvious, shes obsessed. 


We know Val a lot more than she does since she only met her once it appears and if she did know her she would just love her as we and her other clients all do.


See who she should really be writing about, Blumenthal!

BLUMENTHAL VOTED AS WORST AG IN THE NATION


The worst offenders flaunt such abuse of power, with the most notorious of the lot, Eliot Spitzer, boasting that he has redefined the role of Attorney General. This sort of activism may benefit the political and policy ambitions of the office holder and his allies, but it imposes real costs on consumers, businesses, the economy, and our democratic system. The wave of lawsuits brought by state attorneys general has fostered corruption, circumvented legislative checks on regulation, taxes, and government spending, made the workings of government less transparent, and diverted attention away from their core responsibilitiesenforcing state laws, defending state agencies against lawsuits, and providing legal advice to public officials. 


Although these abuses are widespread, some attorneys general are worse than others. Based on a set of explicit criteriasuch as encroachment on the powers of other branches of government, meddling in the affairs of other states or federal agencies, encouragement of judicial activism and frivolous lawsuits, favoritism towards campaign contributors, ethical breaches, and failure to provide representation to state agencies or to provide legal advicethe following state attorneys general have earned the dishonor of being the nations Top Ten Worst: 


 NUMBER ONE GOES TO WHO? 1. Richard Blumenthal, Connecticut

2. Bill Lockyer, California

3. Eliot Spitzer, New York 

4. Zulima Farber, New Jersey 

5. Patrick Lynch, Rhode Island 


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#9 Consumer Comment

Actually get the facts right-the Hoffmans are suing the AG-you have it backwards!

AUTHOR: jack - (U.S.A.)

Letter I just received...thought I would post this too as it says it all

One of the most prestigious judges in the nation has ruled that the AG's actions were so wrong and so disturbing he is letting and ENCOURAGING the Hoffman's sue the AG and the AG reps have been totally embarrassed because oft this now and these AG's are even having to admit they lied on court documents it looks like. Sadly it appears this is what these departments do, they push business owners into giving money to feed their budgets but in this case it was so clear that you cannot even check out of the website without agreeing to Auto Ship that clearly the clients signed up for Auto Ship and then the whole thing became such a joke that the Hoffmans turned around and sued the AG and the judge sided with THEM over and over again-he made these young AG's look like such fools that I read that one said he had to leave as he thought he was having a heart attack and it appears one no longer works there! The only 2 supposed injured clients that had the nerve to show up ( looking for free money handouts no doubt! ) for the hearing admitted that in reality they did sign up for regular ongoing orders and had mislead the AG all along it appeared..now this ONE gal who wrote ALL of these bogus Rip Off Reports here who the Hoffmans have uncovered from New Jersey is getting sued for her lies on the internet I just read-good, defamation is serious Judy. Not a great idea to try and walk over the Hoffmans. Good for them! Too many jealous jerks in this world, cannot believe the smut I read from that New Jersey gal-totally uninformed. The Hoffman's are strong wonderful people and we have adored them and Val's products for nearly 2 decades! 20 years of business is more than over 98% of this world EVER accomplishes. Read the stats.
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#10 General Comment

The Judge Sided with Val-Good Job Val You Stood Up for your Rights! You will win a fortune I bet!!

AUTHOR: jack - (U.S.A.)

Court docs don't lie..ACTUALLY the truth is and you can read the court records if you like is that the judges called the AG's office potential actions "vexacious, immoral, shocking and appalling for what they did to Ms Hoffman and sided with HER as her policies are obviously very clear and the AG was trying to force her into refunding those who clearly did not deserve it. THEY wrote her policies! God bless her, she was strong and stood up for her rights-the other judge also removed the entire lien and sided with HER as well allowing HER to sue the AG AND its staff member even personally he was so disgusted by this AG's actions and NOW a class action suit may begin against the AG as company after company is coming forward saying these AG reps did this to THEM too-know the facts, you sound like a real fool writing as you did and what a loser after 8 years that you still care!? 

Oh and by the way Val just told me-YEH! that his big mouth lady from New Jersey who keeps writing this smut is being SUED for defamation and slander coming up so people better watch what they post and its easy to find out who posts it!

This lady is correct who wrote below....

In life its often hard to admit when we are wrong but in this case I must suck it up and admit I was wrong about the Hoffmans and the company Ms Hoffman runs. I reported on the hearing you see and when I read all the documents I felt ashamed and embarrased as the reality of this is that the policies of the herb farm were those dictated by Consumer Protection themselves-it was really ironic when I heard the testimony of the ONLY client who had shown up to the hearing and saw her humiliate herself and then break down admitting she DID actually sign up for the Auto Ship program and was simply angry as she forgot to cancel....it really put a light on for me and when I read more and more about this case it was pathetic how people jumped to conclusions and clearly were so jealous of the lovely home the couple had as that kept being mentioned over and over-how is that relevant to the case!? The reality is no one was just put on an Automatic shipping program-they signed up themselves-and when I checked the website Ms Hoffman was right its written all over it ( and on her booklet and receipt too) -page after page and I couldn't even check out on the website without agreeing to it-it is far from deceptive and unclear as people tried to claim and truthfully why did people

( unless they were jealous of a young successful couple ) make such a big deal out of an Auto Ship program case-its a very common thing out there these days. In addition, when I read more I realized they are a simply hard working family and were really treated like crap I must say by a very few small minded and I might add very rude individuals.... the things written by it turns it out ONLY 3 individuals were beyond cruel and as a learned very false.. I am not at all surprised it turned out the complaints were an 70 % less than 8th what was claimed and that the judge sided with the Hoffmans....NOW the State of Ct has bought themselves a huge lawsuit it turns out as I read the documents and the Hoffmans are suing them in 2 states to the tune of 6 million dollars-good for them! 
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#11 Author of original report

REBUTTALS TO MY RIPOFF REPORT ARE A SCAM BY VALERIE HAWK HOFFMAN

AUTHOR: Judy p. - (U.S.A.)

If you read the rebuttals to my ripoff report on Valerie Hawk Hoffman's company, Sage Advice Herbs you will begin to notice that they all have the same tone and manner of speech -- that is because these were all written by Valerie herself. 

Valerie Hawk Hoffman pretended to be a lowly employee of her company when I called Sage Advice to complain that she had used deceptive business tactics with her "auto ship" system.  I later found out that I had been speaking to Valerie herself and she was merely play acting.  I discovered this when I saw a posting on the internet by a former employee of Sage Advice (Valerie Hoffman) who could not take the lies and deception anymore that Valerie Hoffman was using to scam customers and posted an "expose" on Sage Advice -- this employee said Valerie would often pretend to be a "clerk" so she could dismiss customers who complained that they were being charged over and over for herbs they never ordered.

The truth is the CT Attorney General's office has on ongoing lawsuit against Valerie Hawk Hoffman and her business and they fully expect to recover money she stole from hundreds of unwitting internet customers.  In fact an attorney who works for the CT Attorney General's office called me a month ago and had more questions for me and he told me they are vigorously pursuing this case against Valerie Hawk Hoffman and I should expect to receive most if not all of the funds she illegally withdrew from my bank debit card account (along with money she illegally took from many, many other customers).  I don't think the CT Attorney General would spend thousands of dollars pursuing a case they did think was viable and one in which they didn't think would result in reimbursement for consumers.

The false rebuttals Valerie Hawk Hoffman posted on Ripoff Report are definitely in keeping with her deranged personality -- I think she actually believes that if she says it enough times and posts false things about herself on the internet people will believe she is a "wonderful, successful" businesswoman.  THE FACT IS SHE IS A COMMON THIEF WHO STEALS FROM PEOPLE THROUGH THE INTERNET.

Janis P.   Sea Girt, New Jersey

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#12 Consumer Comment

freshherbsandteas.com scam

AUTHOR: soapmaker - (United States of America)

On January 08, this woman was using the name "freshherbsandteas.com". She is pretending to be a purchaser for a large company called FreshCorp, and is trying to get small internet shopowners to send her products for a big shindig she's arranging. Her pitch is that you must send at least 40.00 of your product to be reviewed by her managers so they can make a huge order. Beware.
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#13 Consumer Comment

Great company-their herbs saved my life! Love them!

AUTHOR: jack - (U.S.A.)

The Hoffmans are wonderful people. Ms Hoffman has been on the Today Show on ABC, in the NY Times, on Martha Stewart Living and a zillion other places for her  20 year business in the natural products industry. Its hard to find a 20 year old business these days. She should be very proud. God Bless her for her dedication.


 This is clearly a group of very jealous people and if one READ the facts clearly, its the Hoffmans who are suing them. Yes thats right and to the tune of over 7 million dollars as the AG was proven wrong and by the way this AG was voted as the #1 Worst AG in the Nation. You can read the article-to summarize it says :


Blumenthal: Wins an AWARD!


The Worst Attorney General In The United States


Two years ago, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) awarded Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal a dubious distinction.  Citing four categories Dubious Dealings, Fabricating Law, AG Imperialism/Usurping Legislative Powers and Predatory Practices Blumenthal was crowned the worst attorney general in the United States.


Get the facts people!

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#14 Consumer Comment

Great company-their herbs saved my life! Love them!

AUTHOR: jack - (U.S.A.)

Val Hoffman lived near me too and she has been on the Today Show, Martha Stewart, ABC, In Redbook, The NY Times and like 100 other places. She is a celebrity in a way so naturally she will receive some backlash but I don't know many companies around for 20 year either as the other woman noted-she sure must be doing something right. I think she is lovely lady and a total class act. I also know its also amazing to hear of any company today to only have one lawsuit in its entire history. I know, I am a lawyer. . Jealousy is powerful people-get a life.

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#15 Consumer Suggestion

I am admitting the Hoffman's were RIGHT and I am SORRY I ever judged them-good for them suing back!! Good people-treated WRONG

AUTHOR: Alley - (U.S.A.)

In life its often hard to admit when we are wrong but in this case I must suck it up and admit I was wrong about the Hoffmans and the company Ms Hoffman runs. I reported on the hearing you see and when I read all the documents I felt ashamed and embarrased as the reality of this is that the policies of the herb farm were those dictated by Consumer Protection themselves-it was really ironic when I heard the testimony of the ONLY client who had shown up to the hearing and saw her humiliate herself and then break down admitting she DID actually sign up for the Auto Ship program and was simply angry as she forgot to cancel....it really put a light on for me and when I read more and more about this case it was pathetic how people jumped to conclusions and clearly were so jealous of the lovely home the couple had as that kept being mentioned over and over-how is that relevant to the case!? The reality is no one was just put on an Automatic shipping program-they signed up themselves-and when I checked the website Ms Hoffman was right its written all over it ( and on her booklet and receipt too) -page after page and I couldn't even check out on the website without agreeing to it-it is far from deceptive and unclear as people tried to claim and truthfully why did people ( unless they were jealous of a young successful couple ) make such a big deal out of an Auto Ship program case-its a very common thing out there these days. In addition, when I read more I realized they are a simply hard working family and were really treated like crap I must say by a very few small minded and I might add very rude individuals.... the things written by it turns it out ONLY 3 individuals were beyond cruel and as a learned very false.. I am not at all surprised it turned out the complaints were an 70 % less than 8th what was claimed and that the judge sided with the Hoffmans....NOW the State of Ct has bought themselves a huge lawsuit it turns out as I read the documents and the Hoffmans are suing them in 2 states to the tune of 6 million dollars-good for them!
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