The company which is ripping us off is a privately owned, Illinois registered company as follows: Global Options Group LLC 55 South Vale, Arlington Heights, Illinois 60005
Phone and Fax 847-890-6201
This company owes us over US$205,400.00 and is continually avoiding both paying and contacting us.
My wife is the owner of 10,000 shares in a USA company called Cita Biomedical Dtox. Back in November 2004, she was contacted by a Kathleen Rosso, a representative of the Hong Kong office of Global Options Group, who wanted to purchase the shares. A deal was made and Global emailed their contract document for the purchase of the shares for a sum of US$64,000.00 which would be transferred into our New Zealand account within 21 days.
The contract was duly signed by us and returned and we awaited the transfer of the proceeds to our account within the 21 day period stipulated in the fine print of the contract.
The deal did not take place however, because within a few days, we were informed there was a certain restriction on the sale of the shares which could subsequently be lifted by an un-named legal entity if we sent the fee of US$5,200.00 to a bank account in New York. This fee would be refundable with the proceeds of the sale.
We sent the US$5,200.00 to the nominated bank account and again awaited the proceeds of the shares sale.
Within a few days we were then informed of a new development. With the restriction lifted, it was revealed that we now had an option to purchase a further 40,000 shares in Cita Biomedical and these in turn would be purchased from us by Global Options Group.
Again, a new Global Options contract to buy these additional shares for US$128,000.00 was emailed to us which we duly signed and returned to Global Options Group, Hong Kong office. We then transferred, as requested, the purchase price for the shares, a further US$20,000.00 to a nominated bank in Latvia. Again we waited for the promised funds to arrive in our New Zealand account within the stipulated 21 day period which meant they should have arrived by Christmas Eve 2004. We were then owed US$197,000.00 according to the Global contract documents!
By mid-January we were becoming increasingly concerned at the lack of communication when we were contacted by a Mr.Jeffrey Thompson of the Global Options Group Hong Kong office with the news that the US Government had frozen the bank accounts of the Global Options Group.
Again we were presented with another problem which could only be solved in the short term by us filling in our details on a US Government form W8 saying we were not US citizens and then sending more funds - US$8,240.00 - to the bank in Latvia. This was to purchase shares on the stockmarket to "liven up"our funds which were apparently held in escrow and only then, could our funds be "nfrozen" and transferred to our N.Z. bank account.
We are now owed US$205,440.00 by Global Options Group.
Despite numerous, unanswered, faxes, emails and phone calls over the next 4-5 weeks, we were unable to make contact with the Global Option's Hong Kong office. Both the Hong Kong office and the Global Option's head office in Arlington Heights have unlisted telephone numbers (according to the telephone operators) which are monitored by answer phones only, it is impossible to speak to anyone and requests to have someone call us back are ignored.
We were eventually contacted by the Mr.Thompson (of the Hong Kong office) who called us at the end of March 2005, from the Arlington Heights head office, and who expressed surprise that we had not received our funds as they were "unfrozen", new stock had been bought and sold and an amount of a little over US$205,440.00 would be sent to our account in early April.
Once again, this did not happen and we sent further emails and faxes to both the Global Option's Hong Kong office as well as their head office in Arlington Heights saying that we had reached the end of our patience and indicating that we felt we were the victims of a clever scam or rip-off and we were considering discussing the matter with the Police Fraud Squad in Hong Kong.
This last statement eventually brought forth a response from the senior partner of Global Options Group in Arlington Heights a Mr.Mark Silber who promised to look into the matter personally and was going to travel to Hong Kong and sort things out. We have since had an email from Mr.Silber on the 20th. May stating that he is closing the Hong Kong office in the short term and our account was being "possessed" at that date.
It is now nearly the middle of June and after over 6 months, we still have not received our US$205,440.00. We believe we have been the victims of an elaborate "RIP-OFF" despite the so-called contracts to buy and we want the money which is owed to us by this Global Options Group!