Report: #1202412

Complaint Review: ZANO & Torquing Group

  • Submitted: Sat, January 17, 2015
  • Updated: Sat, November 28, 2015
  • Reported By: Bo — Arlington Texas
  • ZANO & Torquing Group

    Internet
    USA

ZANO & Torquing Group Ivan Reedman, Reece Crowther ZANO kickstarter scam & vaporware; does not actually fly Internet

*Author of original report: Merry Christmas GUYS!!!

*Author of original report: Show us the parts!

*Consumer Comment: Kickstarter Backers are Not Creditors - Reece and the Busby's Are!!!

*Author of original report: Torquing investigated by Trading Standards

*Author of original report: They are already on to the next scam....

*Author of original report: Ivan, where is my public apology you promised?

*Author of original report: All an elaborately staged scam.....

*Consumer Comment: Truthout

*Author of original report: Torquing Group stalling to buy more time.

*Author of original report: Sign CHANGE.org petition - Zano Drone Refund! Biggest Drone Kickstarter is Biggest Fraud!Zano Drone Refund! Biggest Drone Kickstarter is Biggest Fraud!

*Author of original report: Premediated fraud - evidence whisperer, linguistic analysis

*Author of original report: Calling for class action and prosecution

*Consumer Comment: CEO ran away with 2.3 million dollars of backer money, no Zano's shipped, largest Kickstarter fraud/scam in all of crowd funded history

*Author of original report: Almost December, still no Zano, hate to say I told you so!

*Author of original report: Here we are in August

*Author of original report: ZANO failed to ship in June, No updates, stole everyone's money

*Consumer Comment: The Zano Conspiracy

*Consumer Comment: Delayed!

*Consumer Comment: Ivan caught in web of his own lies on KickStarter comments

*Consumer Comment: Common sense folks. This ain’t rocket science. Think about it.

*Consumer Comment: Dongs

*Author of original report: Update

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Torquing Group, by and through its vaporware product “ZANO”, and via facilitation of KickStarter is guilty of knowingly and intentionally defrauding both the general public and all customers who have contributed monetarily to the ZANO product.

The public has been misled by Torquing group and feed material misrepresentations as to both the effective core functionality and to the actual development status of ZANO.

ZANO is a self-purported micro-UAV drone that is also purported to be highly autonomous, intelligent, and capable of taking “selfies” and group photos and videos in automatic and autonomous manners.

Late last year, in the 4th Quarter of 2014, the UK company known as “Torquing Group” started a KickStarter campaign under the guise and pretext of raising funds for mass production of its “ZANO” UAV/drone and in order to ostensibly ‘lower the unit cost’ of the product by raising production volume. [continued below]....

.....

The ZANO campaign on KickStarter was successfully funded on January 8th 2015, and in total it raised about £ 2,335,119 and amassed over 12,000 individual backers.

As of January 16th 2015, there is still zero evidence that a working model or prototype of ZANO actually exists. To date, there is no evidence that ZANO actually flies, and the obviously staged professional promotional teasers of “ZANO” notwithstanding, Torquing Group has never released any images, photos or videos of ZANO product anything working or of ZANO flying or in-flight. Furthermore, Torquing Group has publicly and repeatedly admitted in writing to these aforementioned facts on their own public forums and postings.

Many inconsistent and contradictory reasons have been given by Torquing Group as to why it is the case that a product in which the core functionality is flight has never been even documented to have flown!

The bizarre reasons given range from saturation of WiFi/AP at an event like CES2015 interfering with and blocking signaling between the smart phone (which acts as a remote), and the ZANO unit itself, to the Torquing Group being afraid that their yet unpatented propriety ZANO technology was going to get stolen and reverse-engineered by unscrupulous participants at CES 2015, to the excuse that all ZANO prototypes had to be disassembled and taken apart in order for the team to work on “subsystems”, to something as farfetched as the laptop controlling the ZANO unit was itself stolen and the police allegedly scrambled and already working on the theft case!

Of all the UAV and drones that were presented at CES 2015, Zano was one THE only one in which we do not have any documented evidence that it flew. We certainty do not have any videos of it flying at CES 2015. Every other UAV, drone, and flying device present at CES 2015 gave a flying demonstration and was recorded doing so by documented videos and other evidence.

Not counting the "professionally" done promotional videos, (which were obviously staged) we do not yet have any documented evidence of any videos of Zano actually bona fide flying.

It would be fair and reasonable to say that Torquing Group should have significant experience in the flight and audiovisual aspects where it pertains to miniature flying drones and the corresponding audio and visual recording systems on these drones.

It would also not be unreasonable to assume that at some point or another Torquing Group should have reasonably known and anticipated that it could be going to crowd-funded route to gets its funding, and being a crowded funded project, most people typically want to see a working prototype in actual action.

Being that 'flight' and 'video' are two of the core functionalities of Zano, it seems somewhat odd that we don't have any evidence of any 'videos' of the product actually in 'flight'. These is furthermore exacerbated by the fact that we have been given contradictory, conflicting and inconsistent versions and events of stories and excuses by Torquing Group of why this is so.

One has to wonder, how it is even possible that all this time that NOT ONE single video was ever recorded of Zano prototype in flight (whether before, during or after it was allegedly taken apart for purported "work on sub systems"...)?! Surely this has become big enough of a concern for Torquing group to offer a long response and for them to take the unusual action of closing a forum post and banning members who have openly questioned them.

So if it was the case that Torquing group had ever at any point in time taken ANY videos at all of Zano in flight, during whatever testing, prototype or flying stage, then would it not be in the best interest of Torquing group to post this video publically to quell what it alleges to be "unjustified" concerns?

Surely if such video existed, it would not do them or the community any harm to post it? If such video does not exists, then begs the question how can a company that specializes in micro flight carrying micro video systems as payload have been so remiss as to never have filmed or made a single video of their prototype ever in flight? Especially if they had reason to know that they might be doing a KickStarter crowd-fund campaign? Surely Torquing Group is not going to now claim that their prototype never actually flew at all? Otherwise, how exactly was their "professional promotional" videos made?

During the KickStarter campaign late last year, high level senior representatives from Torquing Group assured all the backers that by January 10th of 2015 they would post “wind and windage” data and specifications for ZANO. They also promised that by January 10th their new and improved “prototyped” models of ZANO would be delivered and they would post videos of ZANO in flight. These prototypes were alleged to have 3% mass increase and 30% trust output increase per unit. It was also alleged these prototypes would be significantly more aerodynamic.

As of January 16th 2015 Torquing group has yet to release any data on the wind and windage performance of any model or any prototype of ZANO. Torquing group has yet to release any images, photos or videos of ZANO flying or actually in flight. The new excuse is that backers would have to wait until late January to early or mid-February in order for the new prototypes to come back from production. And Torquing group has openly and repeatedly stated that it would not release any images or any videos of ZANO flying or in flight until at least after that date.

Reece Crowther of Torquing group was documented and there is evidence captured on camera at CES2015 of Mr. Crowther telling the public that the reason Torquing group did not have a working model of ZANO capable of flying and demonstrating at CES2015 was due to “the laptop controlling ZANO” being “stolen”, and that the “police” already have an open “case” on the incident.

If Zano is purported to be fully autonomous, why does it need a laptop to control it?

And when pressed for an actual case incident number, Torquing group could not and did not provide any response.

Furthermore, this excuse is entirely inconsistent and contradicts the reason given by Ivan at Torquing group as to why a working model of ZANO was not presented at CES 2015.

Namely, Ivan at Torquing Group contradicted statements given by Reece with a public post stating:

“As the director for research and development, it was my call to not let a programmed Zano out of the office. It is a difficult situation, I know people want video but if we miss our project milestones now, the flow on effect to delivery is huge. One of those damned if we do, damned if we don't situations. Our priority has to be project milestones first as that was our promise to you all and foremost and then the natural progression is more video.”

To date, Torquing group has produced absolutely zero evidence that ZANO can actually fly under any conditions or circumstances. Under direct examination and questioning, the senior administrators of Torquing group openly admitted that they do not yet have a single photo or video of any ZANO ever in any stage of flight. Torquing group has repeatedly missed deadlines and presented both CES, its paying customers and the general public with contradictory and inconsistent stories of events.

Torquing has repeatedly made claims on its website, its KickStarter page, to CES and to the general public that ZANO flies.  Torquing already presented misrepresentations that they have already possessed a working prototype of ZANO prior to the actual start of the KickStarter funding campaign.  

There is absolutely zero evidence to substantiate any of Torquing group’s claims that a working product or flyable prototype of ZANO ever actually existed. And yet Torquing group has succeeded in deceptively and fraudulently collecting over £ 2,335,119 and it has defrauded more than 12,000+ individual financial backers by misrepresenting the actual capabilities of ZANO and its true status or stage of development.

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/17/2015 02:30 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/zano-torquing-group/internet/zano-torquing-group-ivan-reedman-reece-crowther-zano-kickstarter-scam-vaporware-doe-1202412. 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. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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14Author
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0Employee/Owner

#1 Author of original report

Merry Christmas GUYS!!!

AUTHOR: - ()

Merry Christmas GUYS!!!

 

https://youtu.be/bauprsGSAQU

Zano Fraud - Ivan Reedman, Reece Crowther, and the Great Kickstarter Drone Heist

 

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#2 Author of original report

Show us the parts!

AUTHOR: - ()

fraud3

 

 

46% of all expenditures, by far the largest slice, went to stocks and manufacturing?

If so, I say
SHOW US THE PARTS!


Recall it was only six weeks ago that you feed us this misinformation:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/to ... ts/1383367

OCT 15 2015


So I ask again, where is proof that the parts actually existed? Or was your "shipping schedule" as fake as your "promo videos"? Don't simply expect us to take your word for it, like you did with the "working prototype". And you can't use "no spoilers" as an excuse this time around. You can't get away with accounting fraud that easily! 


http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/ZANO-Torq ... oe-1202412

NOV 15 2015

fraud2

 

 

 

 

 

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#3 Consumer Comment

Kickstarter Backers are Not Creditors - Reece and the Busby's Are!!!

AUTHOR: David - (USA)

So the final act of this massive fraud is now almost complete. Ivan, Reece and Torquing set up a fake campaign with doctored videos from the very start and ended up successfully scamming 12,000 investors totaling over 3.5 MILLION US dollars, all the while knowingly violating Kickstarter's Terms of Service, and continuing to perpetrate this massive campaign of fraud misrepresentation and downright criminal deception by denying that they used fake promo videos, by falsely asserting that at the time of the campaign a fully working prototype already existed, and by proclaiming there was no justified cause for concern even when directly challenged and confronted with the hard questions, and by threatening and censoring all those who critically questioned the authenticity of the Zano promo videos and whom may have exposed their scheme early on, and by covering up their lies with more lies. In the end the facts speak with themselves, Torquing group shipped only 4% of the 12,000 drones, and of that 4% almost all were duds and nonfunctional drones, most couldn’t even fly and none possessed any of the working functionalities that were pitched during the campaign. They sent out #49 updates, and in none of the #48 updates leading up to update #49 did they ever mention any potential financial or money problems. In point of fact, update #48 and as recent as October 15th 2015, Reece/Ivan and Torquing group published a very detailed shipping schedule indicating the bulk of the shipments were already lined up and ready to go… but then they suddenly go silent, Ivan claims to have been sick, (just like Reece's fake police report and alleged laptop theft for why they couldn't show a fly Zano at CES, it too was also a lie to gain backer sympathy and still more misdirection and stalling and scheming!) a short while later Ivan pretends to ‘resign’ from his own inbreed scambiz of a company, (while Busby already started a new company!!) they abruptly close shop, website is taken down, fleed the country, they fake bankruptcy and now they claim to be their own creditors and will pay themselves with the money that they stole from us. Meanwhile, after much public pressure all Kickstarter does is sends them a letter reminding them of their legal obligation but doing absolutely nothing, and telling the 12,000 victims that they had no idea of this scam, even though they were warned by myself and others, and it was Kickstarter that promoted and facilitated this fraud by choosing it as a "Staff Pick" while admitting that they never did the vetting nor due diligence. Guys, if we let them get away with this they will just do it again, under a new company and new names.

 

I just had a thought about this latest update so I called Stones & Stones for some clarification.
All backers have now been informed via email that they are not considered creditors in this project. So basically £2.3m in debt is wiped from the books.
So I asked them who creditors would be then. I asked whether any directors that put money into this project would be creditors and guess what? Yes they would be.
So Reece and the Busby's, the people that lost everyone their money, now get a share of whatever is left. This is vile.

 

https://web.archive.org/save/http://zanoforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=198

 

Either a court injunction to stop this or Reece and the Busby's get what remains of your money

 

Personally, I think our best bet for hitting the directors in their pockets is to await the Trading Standards report and then sue the directors for fraudulent misrepresentation. I think I'm right in saying that if we can make that stick they cannot hide behind the fact that TG is a limited company because they then become personally liable for all moneys obtained fraudulently

 

Okay. Does anyone still have any doubt in their mind that this whole thing was a staged scam from day-one and all the way to the very end?

 

One thing is perfectly clear, from the very beginning all the way to the very end at no point were we ever told the truth.

Recall that one of the frequently stated reasons for why Ivan was hesitant to post video of flying prototypes during the campaign was that the original promo videos were done last September and that Zano was already much further along and so it wouldn't "do it justice", and that he "didn't want to spoil it". We now know of course that these were nothing but lies and deception.

How did we go from a comprehensive shipping schedule posted on Oct 15 indicating by all measures shipments lined up and ready to be delivered to Ivan feeling sick, then Ivan abruptly resigning, then Torquing abruptly dissolving, then finding out they have no money left, all the in span of basically a single month, when prior to update #49, none of the other #48 updates ever hinted at any signs of money troubles? Followed by Director's fleeing the country, owner's starting a new company, but complete and under radio silence, zero accountability and no explanation whatsoever?

The real question is at what point during this whole scheme weren't we mislead? What did they ever tell us the real truth about? Was the laptop really stolen at CES? Why didn't Reece post the police report like he said he was going to do? Is "hardware/network" failure the real reason the official forums were shutdown and then conveniently never brought back up? And why did they go out of their way to stage the promo videos, knowingly in violation of Kickstarter TOS? Or what about the bait and switch of shipping to pre-orders before backers when they publicly promised on video and in writing exactly the opposite when they were trolling for backer money during the campaign? You call it mismanagement if you want, but this amounts to fraud and criminal intent.

 

 

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#4 Author of original report

Torquing investigated by Trading Standards

AUTHOR: - ()

Firm behind Zano mini-drones investigated by Trading Standards

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-south-west-wales-34878162

http://www.westerntelegraph.co.uk/news/14093370.Liquidated_Zano_robotic_drone_company_under_investigation

 

"Earlier this year, Ivan Reedman, managing director told members of the county council’s scrutiny committee that monthly production of the drones could be as high as 200,000."


He said the infrastructure involved could lead to the area becoming “like a Silicon Valley”.

 

Guys, fill out this questionnaire and return to

tradingstandards@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

 

Dropbox link

 

This is worth 5 minutes of your time! Ivan and Reece already got away with so much more!

 

< zano questionnaire.docx >
  SHA-1: 2CB333AE16346892FEFC4876CFFB419C064DF1BE
  SHA-256: BD404D06FC959BDE6EE389A08C4B2FDF01E250A183E8CB497364F3E57EA99E9A
 

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#5 Author of original report

They are already on to the next scam....

AUTHOR: - ()

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#6 Author of original report

Ivan, where is my public apology you promised?

AUTHOR: - ()

 

Good afternoon all,

To Bo Chen. He backed this project for £1 on the 30th of December. He was refunded his pledge. He has taken a personal vendetta against me, my family and my company. It is not fair, nor justified. Anything he has posted is all in the public domain and not once has he/she actually identified who he/she is. Easy to attack when you hide behind an anonymous user name.


That is my real name dude, not some anonymous username. But nice try.

Now onto video footage. The campaign videos were shot in September, that footage is 5 months old. we want to give you footage of where we are now, not where we were.

Okay, so how exactly did we go backwards? Is this like Back to the Future where technology reversed on us?

We want to represent the technology to the best we can, we are a business.

A scammy fraudulent one at that!; well not even that anymore!

As stated, we have rebuilt a prototype for more development whilst waiting on the preproduction boards. You will get footage of this shortly. I have mentioned this already. We plan to do a short video showing the SDK and talking to Zano to show how easy it is, launching, landing etc all through the SDK with simple one step commands.

We also hope to release an alpha SDK soon. It is all happening. This is a massive project, so much is happening behind the scenes. Please appreciate that.

In retrospect, lots of other shady things must have been happening behind the scenes too in order for us to get to Update #49. How did you spoil 3.5 MILLION USD and not once told us in any of the other 48 updates that you were going broke?

Also, I am in contact with a few backers who we will be offering the chance to be the very first to play with Zano when we get the preproduction version back, programmed and tested. How could we be more open? These backers will appear in a creating Zano chapter too as impartial users.

For starters, what did you spend the money on? Lets see your accounting books. You owe us at least that much. That is also part of Kickstarter TOS which you agreed to when you started this whole mess.

Also remember, we have been open and honest about who we are right from the outset. I can't say that about Bo Chen.

Really? You have been open and honest? And what exactly have I lied to the public about?

I'll repeat for anyone who may have missed it.

I started Torquing as a small business when I was 14 and living in Australia. I closed this business when I changed fields to another business, which grew into a small company.

I left Australia and came to the UK where I started Torquing Technology Ltd in memory of Torquing my business I started and ran for years during my early stages in my career. If I wanted to hide anything, why would I deliberately tie my entire life together?

Videos are coming, we wanted to surprise everyone not be harassed into releasing them before we were ready. Even when we do release these videos, baseless accusations will still follow.

Baseless?

We also have plans to show Sparrow and Firecrest as they are being built too.

My final word on this, because someone can't see how it is possible, doesn't mean it isn't possible, just means they don't know how. That is why intellectual property is so fiercely guarded.

Hey show us the code! I thought you said you were writing SIN/COS/TAN functions in assembly code from scratch! I'd like to see one of those please. Even if you claim you can't ship the stocks and parts that are allegedly in inventory, surely you can open source what code you developed so far? Or is that proprietary and are you going to use that for your next scambiz?

Anyway, I won't be responding to these acquisitions anymore.

We are simply going to focus on delivering what you all want and what we have promised to do. Yes, videos are coming and soon.

Yeah and you failed at that too!

Kind Regards,
Ivan
@FlyZano


Now where is my public apology?
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#7 Author of original report

All an elaborately staged scam.....

AUTHOR: - ()

Torquing Group Ltd

Dear Mr Chen.

Thank you for contacting us at the ASA.  We have assessed the ad and your complaint but consider that there are insufficient grounds for ASA intervention on this occasion.  Our role as an organisation is to help ensure that advertising is legal, decent, honest and truthful. We can intervene if an ad that has been broadcast appears likely to be in breach of the UK Code of Non-Broadcast Advertising by, for example, being likely to cause serious or widespread offence, being materially misleading or risking causing significant harm.

It is our understanding that Torquing released a statement today confirming that they had decided to pursue a creditors’ voluntary liquidation.  As a result of the company’s liquidation, it would therefore neither be possible nor appropriate for the ASA to pursue the complaints further on this occasion.

I realise this outcome may disappoint you, but thank you for taking the time to contact us with your concerns. If you would like more information about our work, please visit our website, www.asa.org.uk.

Kind regards

Emma Fuller

Complaints Executive

Direct Line *** **** ****

Advertising Standards Authority

Mid City Place, 71 High Holborn

London WC1V 6QT

Telephone 020 7492 2222

www.asa.org.uk

Follow us on twitter: @ASA_UK

Legal, decent, honest and truthful

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#8 Consumer Comment

Truthout

AUTHOR: Gilberto De Piento - (USA)

From: w****l [mailto:w****l@l*****k]
Sent: Sunday, November 15, 2015 12:44 PM
To: 'B*****n'
Subject: RE: Concern

Believe me, if they screw everyone I will get everything I know out to the public. But first I’ll offer it all to a collectively assigned solicitor so it can be used in a court of law.

 

From: B*****n [mailto:d*****t@s*****l.com]
Sent: 15 November 2015 18:37
To: 'w****l' <w****l@l*****k>
Subject: RE: Concern

Nice! That is what I would have done too! I’m in Texas, don’t know about UK, make sure you didn’t violate any privacy or wiretap/recording laws.

Will be cool to see how all this plays out. I think you are wise to keep your options open and have a foot on both sides.

That ways, if they do screw the backers, leak that s**t so the public can have access to it.

From: w****l [mailto:w****l@l*****k]
Sent: Sunday, November 15, 2015 12:34 PM
To: 'B*****n'
Subject: RE: Concern

Hi Bo,

My reasons for trying to help were never for Torquing’s sake. I tried to help for the sake of all the backers and pre-order customers. I hoped that by being a voice of reason and gaining their trust they may listen to me and improve customer service and communication. I was wrong, so I’m leaving them to it.

Your right, I did give them the benefit of the doubt. But I’m not as naive as you may think. I recorded everything. I have a lot of the old website backed up, over 400 emails to and from them, every video and press release, even every telephone conversation recorded. If they screw everyone then they get screwed personally. Tit for tat.

I’ll decide what to do will the forum in the next few days. The only thing I’m sure about right now is getting away from this project. Just had enough.

Speak soon,
David


From: B*****n [mailto:d*****t@s*****l.com]
Sent: 15 November 2015 18:08
To: 'w****l' <w****l@l*****k>
Subject: RE: Concern

David,

Thanks again for the response. Objectively, I will be the first to state I am probably not the right guy for the task of handling such a forum such as this. It is obvious that I am biased, however there is no ulterior motive other than the fact that I am obsessed about going after entities that I believe to be shady. I’ve also gone after the likes of Star Citizen, which makes Zano a gold fish flopping compared to when that whale of a Kickstarter campaign goes down. (see attached).

Bottom line is that I have a good “bs” detector. Nothing gets past me, and from the Very start I felt intuitively in my gut that this whole thing was a sham. From the videos I could sense their body language and the way they talk and knew something wasn’t quite right. Reece, Ivan, etc they were all in on this from the very beginning.

I know you like to give them the benefit of the doubt, but all they have done is traded that ‘benefit of the doubt’ in order to buy time and stall and stall and stall until it is too little too late. I’ve went after a lot of scammers and seen this MO many many times. So it is apparent to me what they are doing. Lucky for us, Kickstarter comments are memorialized. Seriously go back and read all of Ivan’s comments (I know you probably don’t actually have time) but all he is done DURING the campaign was promise videos, then that deadline was pushed back and back and back and then before you know it campaign ends, they got all the money, but no videos were posted. (excuse was ran out of time) It was a stalling tactic so that no wary backers could figure out what was wrong during the campaign otherwise it would cut into their money grabbing momentum. Now we know, too little too late, the real reason why there wasn’t a video, and it was because there never was a working prototype in the first place. This is what I pointed out and what I got banned for. I also have documented evidence that I addressed these concerns directly to Kickstarter both during and after the campaign, they stood by, did absolutely nothing, was more than happy to turn the other way (violating their own TOS) and collect their percentage, then they kicked me off the site for trying to warn others of what I figured out. Now that s**t hits the fan, KS goes silent, keeps their scam monies, and states backers should have done their down research…..

TQ bragged about HPC this and Supercomputer that, then they come up with the excuse that forums died due to hardware/network failure and they have to bring critical systems up first. We both know this to be completely BS and we all know why they really shutdown the forums. As both a containment measure and to “buy more time”.

Then Ivan being sick for weeks. Then Ivan all of a sudden “resigned” which “shocked” and “surprised” everyone at TQ. (don’t you really see what they are doing here??!) now we waited a few more days for a bullshit “official statement” that amounts to absolutely nothing which in and of itself is a ploy to buy another few more days/weeks of time.

Fact is, they lied about the “technology already exists”. They lied about “working prototype already exists”. They faked the promo videos, and made misrepresentations that those videos were real. Even when confronted Ivan/Reece/TQ continued to lie and make excuse after excuse after excuse. They continued to lie about why no flying prototype was demonstrated at CES 2015. They lied about the stole laptop and fake police reports. They lied about why the reason the forums went down…. Etc etc etc

This whole thing is a scambiz family owned inbreed company in the first place, do you really believe the excuse that Ivan went ill, and then suddenly resigned and now they are trying to figure out what to do? The crap about “irreconcilable differences” is a diversion tactic. The real question is what have they actually delivered and what haven’t they lied to us about?

I know that you give them the benefit of the doubt, you may even think that Ivan/TQ had “good intent” and although they lied in the promo videos you might believe that they were sure that if only they could get the money first then they could pull it off and bootstraps Zano into existence. The only problem with that is that since this was not communicated to backers, it is still a “material misrepresentation” which goes against Kickstarters own TOS.

Know you see, the way the world works, if (and only if) they magically did deliver, then it wouldn’t be an issue. But they DID NOT deliver. AND they lied from the beginning. So they deserve what is coming and you are being too nice. They choose to overleverage, overpromise and go the risky route, now that they have failed they want to plead for mercy? Real life doesn’t work that way. There are consequences.

---

Again, I’m probably not the best candidate. Pick me only if you want someone to go after Zano hardcore. I’m not afraid of being sued. They can bring it on.

Thanks,
Bo

P.S. Timecop, although smart, technicial, and in the industry, really just feels like a troll….


From: w****l [mailto:w****l@l*****k]
Sent: Sunday, November 15, 2015 11:13 AM
To: 'B*****n'
Subject: RE: Concern

Hi Bo,

I did reply to you by PM already but to answer this email – there is no way whatsoever I will let Torquing or anyone associated with them have control of this forum. I agree with you in that they gave up any right when they closed their own forum which was a scummy move.

I’m going to let the thread run for a couple of days before deciding who to pass it on to.

Like you I’m appalled by how Torquing have acted. In fact this is my main reason for giving up. I’ve done a lot of publicity for Zano in that I’ve put videos out etc (all unofficial and unpaid of course). I’ve tried communicating with all of the directors – especially on trying to get communication to the 12k backers. And I’m getting nowhere. So, to put it bluntly, f**k them. If they can’t see reason then they don’t deserve any help.

I’d appreciate it if you could keep my personal views between you and I as I really don’t want to kill any small optimism that some backers still have. This project is a mess.

Lol, just seen your other email. Dong’s believes I work for that shambles of a company and is annoyed I banned him. I only banned him because of his language which was unacceptable (IMO) on a public forum. As you’ve seen I have no issue with constructive posts criticising Torquing. I mean I had no issue with anything you posted. I do like the emails he sends me a few times a day. Some of the email addresses are genuinely funny 

Anyway, thanks for your offer and I will think about it.

All the best,

David


From: B*****n [mailto:d*****t@s*****l.com]
Sent: 15 November 2015 16:55
To: w****l@l*****k
Subject: Concern

w****l,

For the love of God, do not give Ivan or anyone from TQ control of the forums. They have a freaking HPC supercomputer or so they claim. They HAD their own forum and they shut it down under suspicious circumstances with pretentious reasons at best.
It is obvious why someone from TQ would want control of the forums!

Your forums can help serve and facilitate a lot of other purposes. If TQ does do a runner and it is proven, backers may not have any other recourse than to take legal action against TQ.
https://www.kickstarter.com/terms-of-use?ref=footer

If you give control of the forums to someone like me, I will help organize a collective fighting force and your forum can be a central point of communication to give all those a voice, an outlet and a way to be heard.

If you give control to me, you will always retain “god” rights and full access to everything. Can TQ say the same? Will they offer or promise the same? Will you even believe them at this point?

Think carefully about it. I know you consider me to be too biased on one side, but better to give the forums to someone YOU consider neutral or unbiased than to ANYONE from TQ, especially IVAN!


Thanks,
Bo

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#9 Author of original report

Torquing Group stalling to buy more time.

AUTHOR: - ()

The overarching modus operandi of Torquing Group (TQ) is the use of various unethical and illegal tactics to deceptively stall and buy itself more time with excuse after excuse until it is too little and too late for anyone to effectively do anything about it or to hold them responsible or accountable for their grotesque misrepresentations and fraudulent actions and behaviors. This is a common theme that has repeated itself over and over, both during and after the initial campaign, throughout each and every stage of this truly elaborate deception and fraudulent money grabbing scheme. 

 

For example, in hindsight it is now clear that TQ never possessed a working prototype of Zano as pitched, and that the teaser and promotional videos were all faked and staged and were not true or actual video representations of a working product or real prototype. Torquing Group should have clearly marked and label those aforementioned videos as "concept videos", to distinguish them from actual videos of real working prototypes and to avoid giving off any mis-impression or misrepresentation. But they choose to actively pursue exactly the opposite route. From the very beginning in all the videos, photos, and materials TQ presented of Zano on Kickstarter and elsewhere, it was also the case that the videos were implied to be of real flying prototypes, that the prototypes already existed, that the technology was already in place, that all the technical issues already worked out, and that they were 100% confident that everything will work, and that they merely needed an infusion of cash in order to increase production volume with the intent of bring down the unit cost of the product.

 

When some early backers expressed skepticism and pressed TQ for videos of the actual prototypes in flight, not only did TQ not come clean and admit to misrepresenting the true stage and status of development of Zano; not only did they not confess to using staged and doctored videos in their promotional material, they continued to perpetrate the fraud by making additional false assurances that the concerns were "unjustified" and by stringy along all the backers with excuse after excuse after excuse as to why they were utterly unable to provide any videos of working prototypes in flight. During the campaign and as evidenced by Ivan's own comments on Kickstarter, he would be asked by many backers of request for videos, each and every time he would promise that videos were soon coming and would be posted before the end of the campaign, but never did he actually deliver on any such videos. It was only after the campaign already concluded and when they finished trolling for monies that Ivan came out of the woodwork and retorted that they merely "ran out of time" to post any videos. But all along Ivan knew the real reason why they could not provide any videos of any working prototypes because he knew that none such prototypes actually existed. In order to cover that lie, he had to conjure up many more lies. The numerous lies and deceptions that were fabricated in order to stall and buy more time are well documented and not worth repeating. Suffice it to say, there is no doubt that even during this initial stage of the campaign that Ivan and TQ knowingly and intentionally mislead and deceived with intent to scheme and defraud in which they did indeed benefited monetarily from such sustained campaign of deception and fraud.

 

Another example, by August and certainty by October of 2015 it was clear that Zano project was in big trouble and that Torquing Group was not going to be able to deliver on what they promised. Instead of openly communicating with backers and being honest and forthright they deployed similar tactics to yet once again deceptively stall and buy more time. They purposefully shutdown the Zano forums as a means of containment of this scandal and to buy more time. Then on top of that they came up with the fabricated story that due to "hardware/network failure" the forums were down, and that they were bring up 'critical systems' first, in an order or priority. This is so scammy it is almost laughable. To this days, months later, the Zano forums are still down and the same excuse is given for why the status of the forums are down. But remember during the campaign Ivan was bragging about HPC this and Supercomputer that? Do recall that it wasn't that long ago when Ivan/TQ/Zano was trolling for monies on Kickstarter that they threw out all sort of empty promises, that HPC/Supercomputer use would be free forever to all backers, and Zano could communicate on TCP 10000 and in any programming language of choice; and Ivan specifically on numerous occasions mentioned how the HPC be used to host supporter websites amongst so many other potential use cases; sprouting that it could be a platform for AI of a hive of swarming Zanos; even once disclosing that the HPC was costing them more than $2000 each month in electricity bills alone! The stark juxtaposition is truly amazing that after they collected more than 3.5 million USD from all the backers they would then do an about face, a reverse 180, and have the audacity to come up with a utterly bold face and outrageous lie that they now cannot even host an online forum? Lets face it folks, the closing of the forum was another tactic to buy more time; and so was the excuse of the inexplicable 'hardware/network failure' that forced forums closed, permanently. 

 

You know, if Ivan was going to resign, he should have just resigned. Instead, for a few weeks we were told that Ivan was sick and not feeling well, that he had fallen ill. Another tactic to buy yet more time. At this point, no reasonable person in any reasonable mind would continue to give Ivan/TQ/Zano the benefit of the doubt. Note also that Reece flew back to Australia and the purported reason was that one of his relatives or family members also had health issues. At this point, backers should be asking what EXACTLY has TQ delivered and what lies HAVEN'T they told us? So a few more weeks go by, we don't hear a single peep, then all of a sudden Ivan announces he resigned and TQ fakes "shock" and "surprise". In reality this was all along a tiny family scambiz with inbreed ties, everyone was in on this scam from the beginning and everyone knew everyone else and their role in this orchestrated fraud and deception; to pretend that TQ was "shocked" at Ivan's so-called "resignation" is almost as laughable as their excuse that they used for why the forums went permanently offline. Then afterwards, Reece promises reporters that within 48 hours they would give an official statement in a press release. More than two days go by, and after that brought them another few days, TQ comes out with literally a two sentence press release that says exactly nothing at all. Yet again another strategy and tactic to buy even more time. Delay tactic after delay tactic. They would even stoop so low and go so far as to fake pitching employees against each other in order to further create another round of diversions and to sucker /induce backer sympathy. This of course mirrors Ivan's fakeness during the initial campaign when he kept saying "no spoilers" and pretending he had to "check with the team first" at the risk of "getting in trouble", when in fact he was the criminal mastermind. How convenient that he now "resigned"?

 

It should be obvious to everyone by now that everything that Ivan/Reece/TQ has ever done since the very beginning was to defraud and deceive and to cover up such lies and deceptions with even more outrageous excuses and claims in order to continue to stall and buy more time. This has been their gameplan and modus operandi from the very beginning and something they have shown to have consistently done throughout each and every stage of this orchestrated campaign of fraud and deception. 

 

Some backers still choose to give Ivan/TQ the benefit of the doubt. Some still want to even at this stage take another 'wait and see' approach. Some people still wish to believe in the good of humanity. So lets play devil's advocate for a moment and try to cast Ivan/Reece/TQ in the BEST possible light. We know for a fact the prototype never existed and that they lied about that, we also know the promo videos were faked and doctored and they misrepresented that. We also know that when confronted with these concerns they made further lies and fabrications. Okay you say, but what if it was all done with "good intent"? What if Ivan deep down in his heart "knew" that if he could just obtain the monetary funds FIRST, then he could pull it off and successfully bootstrap Zano into existence when otherwise it would never have been possible without such a whitelie? Maybe they truly felt the ends was more important than the means? 

 

The problem I have with this is two-fold. First, because TQ was never honest with the backers from the start, because they never marked the promo videos as concept art and because they clearly tried to pass it off as something that already existed when in fact it did not, this is still bona fide false advertising and fraud no matter how you put it, and it still violates the Kickstarter TOS. Based on this sort of twisted logic and rationale, anyone can come up with fake pics and fake videos and pitch nonexistent products on Kickstarter to get millions of dollars! As long as they deep down "truly believed they could pull it off".. then it is okay to lie, steal, defraud, cheat, conspire, cover up, etc.

 

However, we all live in the real world. If (and only if) they had somehow pulled off a miracle and actually delivered everything and then some, or even if they delivered anything even remotely resembling what they pitched within a reasonable time window of their originally promised time frame, then I seriously doubt most people would care that they essentially fibbed in order to pull it off and cover such a hole. (much like in the movie Arbitrage (2012))

 

The problem is that not only did they over-promise and under-deliver, not only did they misrepresent, lie, cheat, defraud, steal, etc in the end they were NOT actually able to actually deliver anything at all. High risks, high reward. They over leveraged,  promised the sky, and in the end delivered absolutely nothing. They should man up, admit to having acted unethically and immorally and be held responsible and accountable for their actions and their failure. They gambled (with our money) and lost, and the whole initial premise was based upon nothing but fraud, misrepresentations, lies and deceptions, AND on top of all of that the end result turned out to be absolutely disastrous. They must be held accountable and accept responsibility. Instead they have gone dark, gone silent, fled the country, faked health issues and fringed resignations, ceased all communication with backers, and did nothing but run and hide. This is truly the lowest of the lowest, and truly inexcusable. 

 

I, however, have always felt that in reality it was far more cynical and evil than mere white lies and incompetence. I believe this whole thing was a well orchestrated and staged campaign of fraud and deception right from the very start and all the way to the end. There was never any intent to follow through and deliver anything. Nothing was done on good faith, it was all smoke and mirrors. The 600 dud units they shipped was a horse and pony show so that they can maintain plausible denialability and pretend to have tried. Otherwise if they had simply done a runner from the getgo it would have been all too obvious and Interpol would have been all over their assess by now. The likes of Ivan/Reece/TQ are far more deceptive and cunning than most have given them credit for. 

 

Ask yourself why is it that we have confirmed reports that TQ building is already empty, shutdown and essentially vacant? Where did everyone go? Mark my words, the next excuses will be that they already spent all the money by buying all the parts. Guess what? They faked that too. It is not beyond the likes of Ivan/Reece/TQ and gang to fake documents and pretend to have spent all our millions of dollars on bulk ordering a bunch of useless parts and now they are stored in storage and gone forever?! Backers need to demand their Zano's shipped even if in the form of non-assembled parts... You want to know why? To force TQ's hand. I'm willing to bet they never ordered such parts, they never spent money on said parts, and don't even have the parts, and merely claimed they did so that in order to file for bankruptcy or at least claim that all the backer/KS money and already been spent so that there is nothing to refund and no way to complete the project. Ask yourself why would they be so stupid to buy a bunch of parts when they KNEW Zano isn't possible as spec'd? What they really did was funnel that money and probably squandered and money laundered it all and then to cover it up they pretend to have ordered a bunch of defunct useless Zano parts that they will then claim can't be shipped.... (because said parts were never ordered and doesn't exists!).... Has anyone actually verified in person the actual existence of these alleged parts? NO. 

 

They lied about the nonexistence flying prototypes and already got away with that. Now they are again lying about nonexistent Zano parts that they allegedly spent all our Kickstarter millions ordering; don't let them get away with that too! Hold them accountable and demand irrefutable proof this time around! This is a lost cause already, but we should do it out of principle and to show that we will not stand idly by to be made fools by scammers and conmen the likes of Reece, Ivan and the rest of TQ.

 

 

https://www.kickstarter.com/terms-of-use?ref=footer

Moment of truth, lets see what TQ does from here on out : 

 

=====

 

When a project is successfully funded, the creator must complete the project and fulfill each reward. Once a creator has done so, they’ve satisfied their obligation to their backers.

Throughout the process, creators owe their backers a high standard of effort, honest communication, and a dedication to bringing the project to life. At the same time, backers must understand that when they back a project, they’re helping to create something new — not ordering something that already exists. There may be changes or delays, and there’s a chance something could happen that prevents the creator from being able to finish the project as promised.

 

If a creator is unable to complete their project and fulfill rewards, they’ve failed to live up to the basic obligations of this agreement. To right this, they must make every reasonable effort to find another way of bringing the project to the best possible conclusion for backers. A creator in this position has only remedied the situation and met their obligations to backers if:

 

  • they post an update that explains what work has been done, how funds were used, and what prevents them from finishing the project as planned;
  • they work diligently and in good faith to bring the project to the best possible conclusion in a timeframe that’s communicated to backers;
  • they’re able to demonstrate that they’ve used funds appropriately and made every reasonable effort to complete the project as promised;
  • they’ve been honest, and have made no material misrepresentations in their communication to backers; and
  • they offer to return any remaining funds to backers who have not received their reward (in proportion to the amounts pledged), or else explain how those funds will be used to complete the project in some alternate form.

The creator is solely responsible for fulfilling the promises made in their project. If they’re unable to satisfy the terms of this agreement, they may be subject to legal action by backers

 

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#11 Author of original report

Premediated fraud - evidence whisperer, linguistic analysis

AUTHOR: - ()

https://www.kickstarter.com/profile/torquing/comments

 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/torquing/zano-autonomous-intelligent-swarming-nano-drone/comments?cursor=8438551#comment-8438550

 

 

I feel that all of TQ, especially Ivan, intentionally made misrepresentations from the very beginning of this whole ordeal. If you go back and review all the comments that Ivan typed up on Kickstarter during the campaign and shortly afterwards, it ends up being like a whole book worth of material. If you examine his typing closely from a linguistic analysis a pattern emerges. A common theme that I noticed even way back then was his rampant hiding behind the "no spoilers" excuse. Seriously, he used the phrase "no spoilers", "we don't want to spoil it", etc hundreds of times throughout his postings. (look it up!) In reality there was NOTHING to SPOIL in the first place, and this was a classic baiting tactic right from the very start. All this done under the deceptive guise and pretext of not wanting to 'spoil' anywhere when in fact they never had a working prototype, they faked the promotional videos, they lied about why they didn't have any other real videos of Zano in flight, and lied about the stolen laptop and police report and so many other things.

If you read TQ/Ivans comments and posting on Kickstarter in a chronological order it means all too obvious. There were many signs and many tails along the way that indicated something just wasn't quite right. At that time remember TQ was praised on Kickstarter as being one of the most communicative creators ever in KS history, they were literally typing up multiple page long comments every single day nonstop for the duration of the campaign. But if you read all the comments carefully you realize that most of it was all fluff. Ivan would promise this and that, but never deliver. He would say things like "I'll post a video by next week, is that Okay?", or "sure, we have a great photographer guy who will show some clips soon, is that alright?" etc to placate wary backers and the such, anything to keep the hype up and to continue to build momentum, but then he would NEVER follow up on actually posting the windage information, or the videos, etc and then at the very end of the campaign after they got all the money the excuse was they simply "ran out of time" when in reality they had all the time in the world to type up almost an encyclopedia worth of comments on Kickstarter when they are asking for money. I got the distinctive feeling by reading all the Ivan/TQ comments that they KNEW EXACTLY WHAT THEY WERE DOING, and hoped that they could just placate people here and there, and never follow up on those promises and hope that no one would notice and that it would get buried under an avalanche of other their other comments and postings with intent to sidetrack and distract those that were concerned and saw the cracks in the facade early on.

I contacted Kickstarter in late December and again in early January and explicitly expressed my concerns and even asked them to look into the prototype to make sure it actually exists and to get clarification on whether or not the promotional videos were actually real or if faked.They merely closed my ticket, banned me from Kickstarter and said they refunded me my pledge but I never got a refund from them. Not only did they not do their due diligence (which goes against their own TOS) in making sure that the promo videos were real and that the prototype actually existed -- and here is another thing that often got to me, Ivan would make these lame excuses why they couldn't show a working prototype, ranging from the firmware being in two pieces, to needing to take the prototype apart for working on subsystems, to excuses like so many of the original ten units had died or been dropped or broken (yeah, remember that?! LMAO) to not wanting the technology to be out the house before they can patent it or fear that it would be reverse engineered, etc -- but Kickstarter actually choose it as a "Staff Pick" and in part helped build the momentum, otherwise we would likely not have as many victims of this fiasco as we do today. Given the totality of the circumstances, Kickstarter should not stand to profit from this mess, they should forget their percentage and not financially profit from a scheme that they themselves helped incubate.

Back then I challenged TQ and was banned from their forums and accused of trolling, and Ivan publicly called me names and accused me of being a competitor or troll, and anyone who pointed out the facts and wanted to express concerns were silenced and accused by Ivan as being slanderous and threatened with lawsuits.

Now they took money, and go hide under the banner of hardware/network failures, health problems and resignations and bankruptcies. Guess they did get the last laugh.

Apparently they are opening up a new company, Reece has a company too. Will they learn from this mess? I seriously doubt it. I believed back then, as I do still now believe today, that this was the intent all along.

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#12 Author of original report

Calling for class action and prosecution

AUTHOR: - ()

[i]ZANO is up and flying, holding position, avoiding obstacles, streaming live video back to a smart device, capturing video and photos. However, with as much capability as we've packed into ZANO, we are continuing to refine the flight, avoidance, video and photo capturing and user interface, plus we have relentless testing and refining procedures prior to us releasing ZANO to the market. We will begin our BETA testing in March 2015. With a view to enter production in May 2015![/i]

Read carefully what they are saying, what they are not saying, and what they are merely implying or alluding to in those statements.

The repeated statements by Ivan and team that Zano ‘already exists’… can mean anything. "up and flying" means that it can get into the air, nothing more and nothing less. "holding position" is trivial, means that it stays at altitude, and even if manually controlled that is still "holding position"... A cheap $20 UAV from China can do all the aforementioned and better.... And "avoiding obstacles" doesn't mean it is doing so intelligently nor autonomously, and "streaming live video back to a smart device, capturing video and photo" says nothing about the quality or effectiveness of said streaming, videos and photos. etc etc

It is what they didn't say that should have been alarming. They didn't say that Zano can do swarming, they didn't say that Zano can track a person, or that Zano is fully capable of taking autonomous photos and selfies or any of those things that they sold the backers on.... the stuff that they used to entice and induce backers to part with their hard earned money.

Nothing that makes Zano "Zano" actually existed but via the obviously staged/faked promotional videos on Kickstarter, they lead the public to the impression that that was real footage and that a true and working -prototype already existed that had possessed all the features and functionalities that they pitched and presented. This is where misrepresentation and fraud comes into play.

The issue at hand is that they should have clearly marked on the promotional videos that these were concept videos and NOT representative of actual production or actual working prototypes. When pressed early on for why no videos of Zano existed they made excuse after excuse after excuse when they should have come clean and told us that the promotional videos weren't of any actual real or working prototype but instead Ivan, Reece and the whole rest of TQ continued that lie and furthered those misrepresentations in continuing to mislead everyone by implying that the initial promotional videos were 'real'.

Their own stated reason for coming on Kickstarter to asking for funds was to  ‘lower the unit cost’ of the product by raising production volume. This was also a lie. The product, as pitched in the initial promotional videos never existed, doesn't exists right now, and will very much likely never exists at all. The video itself was fraudulent advertising, and they perpetrated that misrepresentation for months and months, both during and after the campaign, even when challenged and asked for the truth and continued to accept pre-orders for a nonexistence product that they knew and should have had reason to know that wasn't even technical possible as spec'd.

These fraudsters need to be sued and prosecuted to the maximum extent allowed by law. Do not let them get away with it.

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#13 Consumer Comment

CEO ran away with 2.3 million dollars of backer money, no Zano's shipped, largest Kickstarter fraud/scam in all of crowd funded history

AUTHOR: Bo C - (USA)

CEO ran away with 2.3 million dollars of backer money, no Zanos shipped, largest Kickstarter fraud/scam in all of crowd funded history

This is by far the largest orchestrated scam and defrauding scheme in the entire history of crowd funding, and by far the largest financial scheme ever perpetrated on Kickstarter. Kickstarter was warned by myself and others to investigate this fraud from the beginning and is equally as culpable in that not only did it violate its own rules in terms of due diligence and making sure that a work prototype as represented actually exists, but Kickstarter actually went out of its way to nominate this Zano fraud as one of its “staff picks”, thereby helping boost into popularity as one of the most monetarily funded Kickstarter campaigns in recent history.  

Ivan Reedman, Reece Crowther, and the rest of Torquing Group all lied from the very start, making criminal misrepresentations, presenting forged videos of an alleged flying prototype that never existed and used said fake, doctored and forged videos to fraudulently induce backers to part with their money and as a direct consequence of sustained campaign of fraud and deception robbed tens of thousands of backers out of multiple millions of dollars on a knowingly nonexistent in which they never had any ability nor intention of delivering.

They lied about everything, including why no working prototype was at the CES 2015, including Reece Crowther publicly lying about his laptop being stolen and making up a fake Las Vegas police incident report (a likely felony in and of itself). This football player turned Director of Marketing has now gone dark and is no where to be seen nor heard from.  

Now after all the money has been funneled away into offshore accounts, Torquing Group goes completely silent, terminates the forums under the guise and pretext of a perpetual “hardware failure” and now the CEO fakes a medical illness and committed medical and healthcare fraud in order to run away to some far away island with all the money that he stole from the public.

They are refusing to give any refunds, they have held the backers money hostage, likely spent and squandered and money laundered every penny, and have gone completely dark, taken the website and storefront down, scuttled the forums, their Director of Marketing disappeared off the face of the Earth (actually now he is apparently racing cars with all the money he stole) and now their CEO faked health issues and staged a ‘resignation’ in preparation of a “bankruptcy” in which they get to run away with all the millions that they scammed without ever having to ship a single working product to any backer.

This whole thing was a fraudulent criminal scheme and an elaborately staged conspiracy right from the very beginning all the way to the end. But Ivan Reedman, Reece Crowther, and the rest of Torquing Group left a trail of bread crumbs and the damning evidence is in the puddling, during the campaign when they were scamming for monies Ivan and team posted several encyclopedia loads of bullshit on the forums and on Kickstarter, this evidence and their own words will be used against them in the coming class action lawsuits and criminal investigation and prosecutions for the worst Kickstarter scam perpetrated in all of crowd funded history.

 

 

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#14 Author of original report

Almost December, still no Zano, hate to say I told you so!

AUTHOR: - ()

So it is now almost December in a few weeks and lets see... still no Zano. So what happened?

The footballer guy turned Director of Marketing has disappeared off the face of the Earth. Literally.

Ivan has developed an sudden acute illness and is purported to be unable to respond to any inquiires and haven't shown himself for like forever.

The Zano forums suffered an alleged 'hardware failure' and hasn't been up for months, and at the time of this writing is still down from same said 'hardware failure'.

No updates at all have been given on the Kickstarter page for months...

 

Guys, I hate to say I told you so, but this has ended up being the largest scam in Kickstarter history.

 

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#15 Author of original report

Here we are in August

AUTHOR: - ()

Here we are in August and no one (not one backer) has actually gotten a Zano yet. Remember the original promise on Kickstarter was that these units will be delivered by June. Then it got moved to July. Now we are in August and the new estimate is that it will/might "begin" limited shipments by the end of August...

 

 

Does this statement above even remotely sound consistent with the original Kickstarter pitch back in Nov of 2014 that Zano 'already exists' and that it was an artifically intelligent fully autonomous drone capable of taking selfie photos and videos, and other feats such as swarming, tracking, etc?

 

Does this statement above even remotely sound consistent with Reece the head of Zano Marketing (aka ex- futbol player) video pitch in which he told us that he reason Zano was on Kickstarter is because they needed the money to increase production volume in order to lower the unit cost?

Unit cost of what? Of a product, as originally pitched, that doesn't even exists and never existed? And where is the production? No one has yet actually seen a working Zano in flight or has any backer gotten one in hand yet....

So come September and we are told to wait until October, then pretty soon it will be a whole year since this scam was first started on Kickstarter and there will still be no Zano in sight....

How long before the backers admit something just ain't right and they got played?

 

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#16 Author of original report

ZANO failed to ship in June, No updates, stole everyone's money

AUTHOR: - ()

Here we are in July, Zano failed its promise to its backers that it would ship in June. Zano also failed to provide the video update #7. So we are nine month into it and still we have no photo or video evidence of Zano being able to fly autonomously

This is one of the largest scams to be perpetrated on the Kickstarter platform! Tens of thousands of loyal backers and investors have been cheated out of hundreds if not thousands of dollars! Reece the football player never posted the police reports of the alleged laptop theft that he promised! If they lied about that, if they photoshoped the images and rigged the videos with strings to make Zano appear to fly, what else are they covering up?

Let’s face it folks, Zano got away with scamming thousands of naïve trusting suckers on Kickstarter. Looks like I was proven right and it is only going to get that much more disappointing from here on out. For $250 USD I could have invested in a cruise vacation instead... of empty promises of an autonomous flying uav that has yet to materialized. (and btw they officially announced that swarming isn't possible and it won't happen)... Classic bait and switch even IF Zano was delivered which it was not and at this rate never will be.

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#17 Consumer Comment

The Zano Conspiracy

AUTHOR: Phil - ()

twitter.com/zanoconspiracy

kickstarter.com/profile/torquing/comments

 

 

Duration of ZANO KickStarter campaign:                                    51 days

Number of backers on KickStarter :                                               12,075

Total amount of funds raised on KickStarter :            $3,536,062.54 USD

 

The look on footballer's face as he runs away with everyone's money :  priceless

 

 

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ZANO campaign's KickStarters comments by Ivan and Reece of Torquing Group

Pages          :          178
Words         :   103,814
Characters  :   577,041
Paragraphs :       2,250

 

When all this is over, term coined for newly invented scam method :


"astrotorquing"

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#18 Consumer Comment

Delayed!

AUTHOR: Paul - ()

Already delayed! Good thing that Ivan/Torquing/Zano's own KickStarter statements and comments are preserved and memorialized for posterity.

 

I’ve done the due diligence to make a backup copy of all the Torquings comments, and put them into document format. Notice, a keyword search for “JULY” turns up ZERO hits, yet we were promised dozens of times that delivery would be in JUNE of 2015. Everything was about JUNE. Not once was it even hinted that it could conceivably be in JULY. But now on their website it says delivery is expected in July 2015. How much you wanna bet it’s going to get shifted to August next? And what after that? Where do we go from here?

 

First the pre-production batches were supposed to come back in EARLY January, then it shifted to MID January, now the official response is LATE January to Mid-February.

 

We still don’t have any proof Zano  ever flying, absolutely zero videos of Zano flying, even though Torquing had repeatedly made promises that videos would be released before Christmas, then it was after Christmas, then it was before CES, before the end of the campaign, then it was after CES, then it was after the campaign. Now the response is “we don’t feel like it anymore”…

 

This is not exactly a pattern of under-promising and over-delivering.

 

Everything points to a classic sign of an elaborate scam.

 

I suppose it COULD be a coincidence that the stars aligned that Torqueing could explain away why it collected $3.5 million USD on the self-purported premise of needing to increase volume of production to decrease unit cost when they have never even released a single video of Zano flying… It could also be a COINCIDENCE that the pre-production batches are supposed to come in right after KickStarter cash processing has finalized and it is too late for anyone to get their money back.  It could be a coincidence that Zano was the only UAV/drone that never fly at CES 2015.  It could also be a coincidence that the promised June delivery has now been officially postponed. It could be a coincidence that the pre-production batch delivery date keeps getting pushed back and back.  

 

But really folks? At what point do we admit we got scammed?

 

https://mega.co.nz/#!gpxW3BjC!CeH8j5cYUiqKVzJjNlctj1DB498p9DJ3CxukPWL6bfM

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#19 Consumer Comment

Ivan caught in web of his own lies on KickStarter comments

AUTHOR: Paul - ()

 

TIMELINE OF EVENTS

 

 

WHEN ZANO WAS ASKING FOR MONEY IT ACTED LIKE THIS : 

 

 

“The only silly question is the question that wasn't asked. We are always happy to clarify or answer questions or queries. The marketing around Zano is about taking selfies. “

“On the question about wind. We are going to address this in a 'In the Lab' video update over the coming weeks” – Ivan  on November 27

---

“Reece and Sam (our brilliant videographer and all around good guy) are with our production partner today and are working on a video for you all. No spoilers but stay tuned mid to late this week for the release :-)” –Ivan on December 1

---

“Hey Gabriel: Absolutely. Leave that one with me, Zano firmware is currently in pieces on the two development Zano's as I am working on the camera and the other Zano’s have been reflashed ready for display reasons. The minute I get the firmware back into a working state, I’ll record some video and post it unedited for you to see. That sound ok?” – Ivan on on December 9

---

 

 

BUT THEN A CHANGE IN TUNES:

 

 

We are working on a number of videos, the problem is, to take time away from finalising Zano to make more videos does slow the project down. However, we want to keep showing you all the cool features of Zano. I'll see if we can compile a video on the obstacle avoidance before the end of the campaign and use it as one of our in the lab videos. – Ivan on December 9

“If you want videos of the prototype in various weather, we can arrange this however it isn't indicative of the production unit as the production unit has 30% more powerful motors and weighs 3% more. We are also reducing the cross section of Zano which will reduce the area that wind can push against.” – Ivan on December 11

“Firstly I want to apologise, the video which I stated would be available today isn't going to be. I reviewed it this afternoon and it's not quite ready. We are all quite perfectionist and until we are happy, we won't release things. I hope it will be available after another edit in the next 24hrs. Anyway, sorry, it is coming, that's a promise.” – Ivan on December 17

“Hey Jim. Regarding video of Zano flying. There are some in the kickstarter footage. We have more raw footage and I will be posting some of those too. The issue is that the prototype and the production Zano are going to be very different as the production Zano has some very substantial upgrades, better motors, tiny changes to the frame, better weight distribution etc so will be even more stable and capable than the prototype.

I will continue to post updates on here well after this campaign finishes and we are expecting the production Zano test batch back to us in mid to late January. At which point the minute it is tested and working, loads of videos will be posted. These will be raw and unedited documentary style videos of Zano flying, the video and photographs from Zano etc. As much raw information as we can reasonably post with our affecting the project timeline (Everything takes human resources to do).”

-Ivan on December 19

 

“Hey Creative. Regarding the video. Thank you. I'll raise this with the team” –Ivan on December 22

---

“Hey Sheri. Regarding the video etc. I will get in contact with Sam, our videographer and see what raw content we have archived. I will get him to do a quick slice edit, so only stitch stuff together into a single video and we can post that. How does that sound?” – Ivan on December 24

---

Hey David. Regarding the videos, please see my earlier comment in this post. We will compile something and post it after Christmas. Should show what your after as some of the footage we took was in woeful weather especially at blue lagoon. That is where the guy jumped off the rock into the water, the wind was nuts.  – Ivan on on December 24

---

“Regarding more videos, we have these in the pipeline. With Christmas and now a weekend, we will look into this this coming week. Please bear in mind the team is also getting ready for the CES trip to Las Vegas so time is limited. We will get as much together as we can and post it for you to see.” – Ivan on December 27

---

“Regarding your doubt about the production mode being any different to the prototype model with regards to the changes I have mentioned, that is a fair point, if you don't mind I'll explain it in more detail and put some of the figures into context.

The first and by far most important upgrade is the motors. A 30% increase in power isn't just a 30% increase in power. The prototype used 85% of power to Hover, the motors just were not powerful enough. At 85% only 15% is left for stabilising Zano is gusty and windy conditions. If you then compare 85% to the new power output compared with the prototype as at least 130%, Zano is then hovering at 65% leaving 35% power for stabilisation. In reality, production Zano will hover at more like 50-55% with a full battery. Anyway, even at 65% that is circa 2.3 times as capable as the prototype at dealing with gusts. That is an enormous change in performance. On top of that, the production model is also 2mm wider and longer, has the battery mounted vertically instead of horizontally so is the centre of gravity is much lower and much better centred so the load on the motors is more evenly distributed and the firmware is much more refined.

I have a video I will be posting shortly that the guys have put together (they leave thursday morning so time is very tight at the moment) before they head to Las Vegas for CES.” – Ivan on December 30

---

“Hey Wouter. Regarding stills and videos from Zano, if you check the videos you will see some of the footage we have edited into the videos from Zano. The production Zano has a different camera to the prototype Zano so the footage we have now isn't going to do the production version justice. However, we will post some raw video shortly.” – Ivan on December 30

---

“There is video and photos edited into various videos on this campaign from Zano. I have some more I will be posting before the campaign ends.

Does that help?” – Ivan on December 31

 

---

 

RIGHT BEFORE KICKSTARTER FUNDED CAME TO AN END, ZANO TRUE COLORS SHOWING:

 

---

“We have run out of time to put any decent avoidance videos together of the Zano prototype, it has been a lighting quick time since we decided to build Zano.” – Ivan on December 31

---

 

AFTER THEY TRANSFERRED ALL THE MONEY OUT OF THE ACCOUNT, LAUGHING ALL THE WAY TO THE BANK:

 

As Marketing Director, it's my responsibility to release footage as and when I see fit.”

Reece 1 day ago

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#20 Consumer Comment

Common sense folks. This ain’t rocket science. Think about it.

AUTHOR: Ding - ()

Common sense folks. This ain’t rocket science. Think about it.

Torquing Group Ltd, a company in the UK that claims to be involved in military and defense contracts with the government or something to that capacity, pitches a miniature UAV/drone called ZANO and goes on KickStarter to ask for funds. No one forced them to go the crowd-funded route, but now that they have gotten away with millions of dollars and potentially scammed tens of thousands of backers, they don’t want to face the scrutiny and instead they are actively hiding behind the convenient cloak of being a purported “military defense company” in order to avoid answering all of the “hard questions”.


Just how many companies that work in the defense/military sector do you know of that pitches their products on KickStarter? Again, no one forced Torquing Group to showcase ZANO at CES 2015; but since they did decide to go on their own volition and did not seem to mind the attention or the limelight, it would also not be an unfair question for the financial backers to ask: “just why is it that out of all the UAVs and drones presented at CES 2015, that Torquing Group Ltd’s ZANO was the only one that didn’t give a working demonstration?”…


Ivan, Torquing Group’s ‘mastermind’, if you will, frequently gives the excuse that they purposefully neutered the ZANO model at CES 2015 because he was not going to run the risk of “letting the technology out of the house or in the wrong hands” or something to that similar effect. Not entirely unfair – even though all the other companies with drones at CES could have deployed the same excuse but none of them did. But then again, it also wouldn’t be unfair for the KickStarter backers and general public to ask just why is it that Torquing Group has never released ANY video of ZANO flying, even when taking the CES event completely out of the picture! Forget about CES for a moment, why don’t we have any videos of ZANO flying, anywhere or at any time?


When asked and pressed directly on the question of whether or not (the staged professional promotional teaser videos notwithstanding) at ANY point in time there was EVER a video taken of any model or prototype of ZANO actually flying and in flight, Torquing Group did its best to evade the question, but in not so many words indirectly conceded and implied that in fact they do not have any videos of ZANO ever flying.


Well, that’s strange you say... Common sense tells you that they should have plenty of videos showing their prototypes flying. Otherwise, how was the professional promotional videos taken? And why would they NOT have any documented videos of their prototypes in flight, unless we consider the increasingly likely possibility that in reality they never really had a working prototype that ever actually flew in the first place? When asked why no employee ever took any videos, even impromptu videos with a smart phone or hand held camera, of any prototype of Zano ever in flight, the reply was an unbelievable : “we work in the military/defense sector so we don’t allow employees to use cell phones or take videos at work”… That would make sense if they were Lockheed Martin or Boeing, and not some fly by the night Mom and Pop shop whose head of marketing is some soccer player with zero security clearance whom they just hired off the streets.


When backers have openly questioned and pressed Ivan and Torquing Group for an actual answer, the rebuttal is often an accusation that the critics in question must be a competitor in disguise hoping to see ZANO fail. Instead of demonstrating responsibility and accountability by either posting a video of ZANO in flight or answering the hard questions of why they are utterly unable to do so, Torquing Group merely retorts that anyone who critically questions them must be a troll, a competitor or someone trying to “bait” or “goad” Torquing Group into revealing and disclosing “how they did it”.


That might be more believable if it were actually true. If they actually did “did it”, I mean... Instead, all they have really done, and all they are really doing is hiding behind the all too convenient story of being a defense/military contractor who is too afraid of letting its secrets out but not afraid enough to ask for money on KickStarter and to showcase a nonfunctional dud of a product at CES masquerading as a working prototype already ramping up in production. They are too afraid that their patents will get stolen, or that their secrets will leak, how convenient and what a coincidence that we are given these multi-pronged layered excuses upon excuses for the truly inexcusable: why there still isn’t a single video anywhere actually showing ZANO flying? 


They have an established pattern of making all these ridiculously outrageous claims yet (with an equally established pattern) have given us precisely zero evidence to substantiate these claims, but having already cashed on these unsubstantiated claims and laughed all the way to the bank, now they refuse to answer the hard questions are rather choose to actively dodge reality. 


When Torquing Group makes outrageous claims and then asks for money (and now pre-orders based on a vaporware product that has yet to fly) based on these unsubstanted (and increasingly unsubstantiable!) claims, they alone shoulder the burden of proof, the burden falls squarely on Torquing Group, and so far they have shown to be either absolutely unable and/or entirely unwilling to meet that burden.

 

A reasonable person with average intelligence and vigilance would have to ask WHY?

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#21 Consumer Comment

Dongs

AUTHOR: Ding - ()

heya,

 

Yeah, only small catch is ripoffreport seems to be blocking japan :)

anyway I'm seeing it through one of my machines in USA, its just more annoying to work on it that way.

 

I'll probably do a blogpost-ish thing like i threatened in my 3rd screenshot, with alll the technical stuff outlined.

 

Did you know? Before Zano, there "was" Swift. (see archive.org stuff below).

 

And before swift, there was that BCB Recon-04 thing (that never actually went in production).

 

And that BCB video (http://www.engineeringtv.com/video/SQ-4-RECON-Micro-UAV-AUVSI-Unma)

The guy is talking *so* much s***, it makes no sense.

He's just stringing random technical words together to sound impressive - but to someone who actually knows what the f*** they're doing it makes no sense.

 

Also bits of that drone is jsut hobby radio contorl garbage, Turnigy motors from Hobbyking.com, 3blade GWS props, the sonar s**t is just $3 garbage from ebay:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/261576743635, probably with covers taken from http://www.maxbotix.com/pictures/HRLV/HRLV-EZ%20Ultrasonic%20Range%20Finder_200px.jpg  or something. notice in the SQ4 video theer's not a single time its shown flying "autonomously", what you see of it flying is what anyone can dowith a cheap $10-20$ flightboard from hobbyking, it is definitely flown in manual.

 

The claims of 30 minutes (in video) and 25 (in product page) of flying time are absolutely ridiculous, that thing has ~5-10mins of flight time max, also the motors hes using are way too high RPM for the props (and 3blade props are less efficient than 2 blade)... the turnigy C1600-3000 motors that you can see on that s*** are just $5/ea hobby motors from HK, but for that size quad he doens't need anything more than say 2000kV, 3k would draw too much current (and lead to less flight time)... So...

 

full disclosure: I'm the guy who made https://www.google.com/search?q=naze32

(so maybe I know a little bit of what I'm talking about, unlike ivan :)

 

You might also be interested in reading what ivan (or rather, the polinski character) writes about himself:

https://web.archive.org/web/20110207191223/http://torquinggroup.com/

https://web.archive.org/web/20121011225751/http://www.torquinggroup.com/index.php?page=aboutus

 

You know this press release right?

http://www.lantronix.com/news/2014/12-16_torquing-group-taps-lantronix-xpico-wi-fi-embedded-iot-enabling-solution-help-aerial-nano-drone-fly-ces-2015.html

 

Founded in 1990, Torquing Group is a leading developer of autonomous, intelligent nano unmanned aerial systems for consumer, commercial and military applications. With a 25 year history specializing in technology, robotics, electronics, engineering and programming, Torquing Group has a proven track record in developing innovative solutions for the public and private sectors to an eclectic array of problems. Torquing is headquartered in the United Kingdom.

 

The '25 years history' is from when he was 14 doing his computer repair biz in australia for 1990 to 2001. If I could backdate all the s*** I did from back when i was 9 years old, It would be one f*** of an impressive list for press releases. haha.

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#22 Author of original report

Update

AUTHOR: John - ()

Another thing I thought was possible is:

 

> holy s***, i get it

> they're stalling until end of month to finsih d***starter cash processing

> once they recveive funds they will announce a delay/unexpected problem wiht prototypes

> and stall for a couple weeks

> while moving the cash out of thier account

> then they will just start trolling everyone with whatever s**t once the money is gone

> LOL

 

- dongs

 

--------------------------------------

 

heh, yeah, i saw that copypasta on the forums and someone pasted it on the kickstarter page, also.

 

anywho, been looking around their hardware a bit more, omnivision sensor does have a mjpeg hardware compressor with variable quality settings, so that partially fixes bandwidth issue between camera and cpu, but that absolutely means that they cannot do any kind of motion tracking or processing on the zano itself. what they could do is maybe send a couple frames per second max (via the bandwidth-limited wifi link), while recording mjpeg to SD card - mjpeg is easy, basically just concatenating frames they receive from camera encoder, doesn't need any special header or processing etc. But not having original raw frames (and definitely not decoding jpeg in realtime on 200mhz mcu), that means all face / target/etc tracking they claim to be able to do will have to run on the app, with whaT I can only imagine being horrible latency - and combined with them *never* being able to send 30fps to phone for analysis in any reasonable way - I still don't think any of the claimed s**t is possible.

 

With this sd-card-recording setup, they've now matched capabilities of

http://www.amazon.co.uk/X4-Quadcopter-Camera-Assorted-Colors/dp/B00D8UO8G6/

 

-----------------------

 

i looked around for some more stuff, mostly back history/ public records.

nothing of value. a tiny family-operated scambiz.

 

everyone is related one way or another, and all the press releaes are written by that polinski lady who's also some family related thing in australia.

 

random s*** below, some of facebook urls might not be relevant.

 

the more stuff I dig up the less and less legitimate this stuff looks.

 

 

23:44 < dongs> http://companycheck.co.uk/company/07783507

23:55 < dongs> http://www.hse.gov.uk/notices/recipient/recipient_details.asp?SV=4063158

23:57 < dongs>

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Why+the+world+will+soon+be+talking+about+Torquing%3B+Ivan+Reedman+began...-a0285893839

23:58 < dongs> https://www.linkedin.com/pub/reece-crowther/a9/12/a1b

23:59 < dudeA> http://companycheck.co.uk/company/08112962/HEARTLIGHT-SYSTEMS-LIMITED

00:02 < dudeA> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLNGsz6eu70

00:03 < dongs> http://ces15.mapyourshow.com/6_0/exhibitor/exhibitor-details.cfm?ExhID=T0002481

00:03 < dongs> http://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/content.asp?nav=&parent_directory_id=104&id=23974&language=

00:05 < dudeB> http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/phil-busby/41/792/96

00:06 < dudeB> https://uk.linkedin.com/pub/reece-crowther/a9/12/a1b

00:07 < dudeB> hes this guy http://companycheck.co.uk/company/09150702/ROCKFORD-LANE-LIMITED/directors-secretaries

00:07 < dudeB> http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3d/Reece_Crowther.jpg

00:08 < dudeB> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reece_Crowther

00:17 < dongs> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6UYFpdIDXc#t=45 left to right:

00:17 < dongs> ivan, ivans wife, footballer, and that busby wahtever dude + his wife

00:20 < DudeC> https://www.linkedin.com/pub/philip-v-busby/60/7a6/705?trk=pub-pbmap totally grey

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/stuart-reedman/2a/50/7a1

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/angela-reedman-polinski/5b/461/400

http://australiaenterprises.com/angela-reedman-ivan-j-reedman.aIDv.australia-company-profile.html

https://www.facebook.com/andrew.polinski.58

http://sunnycoastkids.com.au/out-and-about/playgrounds-parks/mary-cairncross-scenic-reserve/

https://www.facebook.com/benjamin.g.law.1?hc_location=friend_browser&fref=pymk

https://www.facebook.com/geoff.anthony.3?hc_location=friend_browser&fref=pymk

https://www.facebook.com/AlexMitchell8?hc_location=friend_browser&fref=pymk

https://www.facebook.com/SamanthaGillard?hc_location=friend_browser&fref=pymk

https://www.facebook.com/andrew.polinski.58?hc_location=friend_browser&fref=pymk

https://www.facebook.com/audrey.swanepoel?hc_location=friend_browser&fref=pymk

 

https://www.facebook.com/Angi3Bab3?fref=ufi

this one is interesting, uses same profile photo as polinski character who signs off on a bunch of australia.edu spam

 

Name: TORQUING

Registration number: 0344720J

State of registration: South Australia

Status: Removed

Type: Business Names

Principal place of business:

Regulator: Australian Securities & Investments Commission

 

Business name: TORQUING

Status: Cancelled

Registration date: 26/09/1992

Renewal date: 17/09/2001

Cancelled date: 13/11/2001

 

http://www.google.com/patents/WO2014064431A2?cl=en

 

http://www.datalog.co.uk/browse/detail.php/CompanyNumber/08386542/CompanyName/SENSIOTECH+LIMITED

 

---------

 

holy s*** have you seen this?

Apparently the footballer guys excuse why the drone didn't fly at CES is that

 

SOMEONE STOLE THE LAPTOP CONTROLLING IT

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-d5q237pRR0

 

 

L O L

 

 

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