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Report: #31346

Complaint Review: National Merchant Center - Costa Mesa California

  • Submitted:
  • Updated:
  • Reported By: Inglewood CA
  • Author Confirmed What's this?
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  • National Merchant Center 3194-C Airport Loop Drive Costa Mesa, California U.S.A.

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Salesman never came back nor he responded to our requests. Did not give us a copy of the agreement, took us 10 months to get a faxed copy. Salesman brought and install defective equipment (printer cuts off during printing receipt) and they knew about defect, when I called they advise me to pull the paper, manually(?). I could not process credit cards(no receipt= no signature)only process debit. I called and request to fix, never fix equipment. Then they send me a letter said we requested in writing cancellation(A LIE). They assesed (read this) US$16,000 that is SIXTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS cancellation fees for the reminder of 2 years on a 3 year agreement. We never requested cancellation, we chalenge the existance of any writen request. Five months later they send 2nd cancellation letter, where they aknowledge we did not send any request to them to cancell, in writing, and now they said we called and cancelled by phone. Contract provides for merchant to cancell by writen notice only. This time they reduced the fees to $11,000.00 and they said they can cancell for any reason. The reason is now INACTIVITY they claim. We paid monthly minimum fees, contract has no provisions for"INACTIVITY" only to pay a minimum fee if process less than a set amount per month. Curious enough, they debited our account, electronically, after they cancelled first time, for 6 more months, until they send the second letter in an attempt to cover up this fraudulent charges, by changing the cancellation date and reducing the fees. They placed the amount in collection on our personal credit report, as we personally guaranteed the contract, thy did this without first requesting from our company, in an attempt to pressure us to pay their alleged fees. We are now litigating the issue.

They have an elaborate scam in place, here: An independent company will sign you up, then they pass the contract with them, and they sign you up with a bank out of state, with a provission in the contract you can only litigate in the Bank' state. We are all in California, the bank is in Tenesee.

The collection agency is in Alaska. It will cost a lot to bring all this parties in California. We decided to sue in US Court in Tenesee. Do not let this happen with you.

Giorgian
Los Angeles, California

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/28/2002 02:31 AM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/national-merchant-center/costa-mesa-california-92626/national-merchant-center-ripoff-costa-mesa-california-31346. 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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3Employee/Owner

#18 Consumer Suggestion

I don't know whats real or not... the information I have doesn't make any sense

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

POSTED: Sunday, July 11, 2004

I know anyone can post anything and more or less claim to be anyone on this site. There are no accounts. No way of verifying whether the person submitted anything is true except through the editors, and all they have is an e-mail address

I don't know why I turned up the information I did but pro audio was a scam site. It was intended on giving consumers false buying confidence when their buddies checked up on it to see if it was legit. Seeing this report thats two scam companies serviced by the same design firm. One of the speakers there in 90% identical to my audiofile speaker except the name tag and the color. Pro-Audio is another scam brand that is produced through the company.

Yes it's true that a design firm is not responsible for websites they host and I was about to dismiss this until I saw the address and suite of both companies were the same and the telephone of design4u when reverse lookup'ed returns NMC as the owner. You figure that one out.

I feel for your situation. I am an innocent in this matter as well. Maybe if Design4u could explain why their contact information is the same as NMC, including the suite listed and why the telephone when reverse-looked up returns National Merchant Center I will post something else. Otherwise the information I have doesn't make any sense but to that point.

You say you never met anyone at design4you company. Then how can be sure even with the testimony from NMC presented at the court case that there is no further relationship besides a website?

As a statement of public record I will say for posterity that other than the fact that design4you designed and/or hosted a scam speaker website that there is no proof that they did anything otherwise.

Their address and suite listed on both their websites are the same, on the live sites, and example sites, and the reverse phone lookup returns NMC. If someone can explain those in a way that makes sense I will make a post and say they are not related to NMC. But only if they can do that. Because if they are in the same suite and NMC pays their phone bill then they are related past a website. There may be a reason but it has to be a good one.

This is my last post unless there is a reason for me to post something extra taking back something else I have said. To have one victim of a scam threaten another victim of a scam is something that is beyond me. What's next? Sueing ourselves?

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#17 Consumer Suggestion

I don't know whats real or not... the information I have doesn't make any sense

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

POSTED: Sunday, July 11, 2004

I know anyone can post anything and more or less claim to be anyone on this site. There are no accounts. No way of verifying whether the person submitted anything is true except through the editors, and all they have is an e-mail address

I don't know why I turned up the information I did but pro audio was a scam site. It was intended on giving consumers false buying confidence when their buddies checked up on it to see if it was legit. Seeing this report thats two scam companies serviced by the same design firm. One of the speakers there in 90% identical to my audiofile speaker except the name tag and the color. Pro-Audio is another scam brand that is produced through the company.

Yes it's true that a design firm is not responsible for websites they host and I was about to dismiss this until I saw the address and suite of both companies were the same and the telephone of design4u when reverse lookup'ed returns NMC as the owner. You figure that one out.

I feel for your situation. I am an innocent in this matter as well. Maybe if Design4u could explain why their contact information is the same as NMC, including the suite listed and why the telephone when reverse-looked up returns National Merchant Center I will post something else. Otherwise the information I have doesn't make any sense but to that point.

You say you never met anyone at design4you company. Then how can be sure even with the testimony from NMC presented at the court case that there is no further relationship besides a website?

As a statement of public record I will say for posterity that other than the fact that design4you designed and/or hosted a scam speaker website that there is no proof that they did anything otherwise.

Their address and suite listed on both their websites are the same, on the live sites, and example sites, and the reverse phone lookup returns NMC. If someone can explain those in a way that makes sense I will make a post and say they are not related to NMC. But only if they can do that. Because if they are in the same suite and NMC pays their phone bill then they are related past a website. There may be a reason but it has to be a good one.

This is my last post unless there is a reason for me to post something extra taking back something else I have said. To have one victim of a scam threaten another victim of a scam is something that is beyond me. What's next? Sueing ourselves?

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#16 Consumer Suggestion

I don't know whats real or not... the information I have doesn't make any sense

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

POSTED: Sunday, July 11, 2004

I know anyone can post anything and more or less claim to be anyone on this site. There are no accounts. No way of verifying whether the person submitted anything is true except through the editors, and all they have is an e-mail address

I don't know why I turned up the information I did but pro audio was a scam site. It was intended on giving consumers false buying confidence when their buddies checked up on it to see if it was legit. Seeing this report thats two scam companies serviced by the same design firm. One of the speakers there in 90% identical to my audiofile speaker except the name tag and the color. Pro-Audio is another scam brand that is produced through the company.

Yes it's true that a design firm is not responsible for websites they host and I was about to dismiss this until I saw the address and suite of both companies were the same and the telephone of design4u when reverse lookup'ed returns NMC as the owner. You figure that one out.

I feel for your situation. I am an innocent in this matter as well. Maybe if Design4u could explain why their contact information is the same as NMC, including the suite listed and why the telephone when reverse-looked up returns National Merchant Center I will post something else. Otherwise the information I have doesn't make any sense but to that point.

You say you never met anyone at design4you company. Then how can be sure even with the testimony from NMC presented at the court case that there is no further relationship besides a website?

As a statement of public record I will say for posterity that other than the fact that design4you designed and/or hosted a scam speaker website that there is no proof that they did anything otherwise.

Their address and suite listed on both their websites are the same, on the live sites, and example sites, and the reverse phone lookup returns NMC. If someone can explain those in a way that makes sense I will make a post and say they are not related to NMC. But only if they can do that. Because if they are in the same suite and NMC pays their phone bill then they are related past a website. There may be a reason but it has to be a good one.

This is my last post unless there is a reason for me to post something extra taking back something else I have said. To have one victim of a scam threaten another victim of a scam is something that is beyond me. What's next? Sueing ourselves?

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#15 Consumer Comment

Wrong Ripoff Report might put you in legal problems and cost you plenty

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

POSTED: Saturday, July 10, 2004

To Mr. Kalani and the others who might think this reports can not be used against YOU, the one who file it!
I am the initiator of this case. We went to Court on this matter, and guess what! A complete print out of all comments on this ripoff report were perfectly admisible in the Superior Court as EVIDENCE. Accepted by THE JUDGE and used by all attorneys in the procedeeings. Our report was not wrong and was used in our advantage to prove the case.
In MR. Kalani case Design4U can easy prove all the wrong elements I mentioned in the previous comments.
I personally know from our Court Case records and transcripts the only conection between NMC and Design4U is the web site Design4U built for NMC. Design4U builds web site, I do not think they sell any speakers. It may be the company sold you the speakers uses a website built by Design4U. Just like the company I reported; NMC used Design4U to built their site.

As a note I do not know nor ever met anyone from Design4U company. I placed this comment to inform Mr. Kalani about my findings, now legal record, which may prove him and his comments wrong and expose him to legal liabilities. I also believe a more deeper investigation had to be done before he could state on public forum his comments.
As we all know, this RipOff Report.com site is used as a reference by a very large number of presumptive customers. Please verufy your comments before posting, it may save you a lot later!

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#14 Consumer Comment

DESIGN4U IS NOT NMC! PLEASE DO NOT SPECULATE

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

POSTED: Saturday, July 10, 2004

Dear Sir, please know from me, for sure you are very wrong when you are stating the two entities are one and the same according to your reports!
I did file the original Report on NMC, since then we went to Superior Court and litigated the issue.

I depose the NMC officers and I was there when my attorney asked about the DESIGN4U connection, the response is under oath and is that NMC had DESIGN4U built their web sites, nothing else. Stop speculating sir, you are wrong!

You may damage an inocent entity, sir, only because you had been taken by some smart you know what along the way. Try the store, next time, this scam is so old, I am surprised it still around. But I guess is people like you keeping it alive.

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#13 Consumer Suggestion

Another interesting note

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

POSTED: Friday, July 09, 2004

I'm not sure if my previous response will get held back for insulting language. It's only been half an hour since that response.

In case is does or does not there are some things I'd like everyone to know.

Design4U's phone number is registered and listed as belonging to the National Merchant Center.
http://www.reversephonedirectory.com and enter 714-662-6800 before they change it. Evidently it seems strange that if you lease your own place that another company pays your phone bill, especially one that is involved in scams, in the same building even.

Hmmmm....no couldn't be. :)

Don't you find it interestingDesign4U does host and do design for National Merchant Center (they are really the same company)
http://www.design4you.com/samples/nmcold/softcharge.html

Don't you find it interesting that the national merchant center also provides design services as well?
http://www.nationalmerchant.com/pdf/card_design_request.pdf

I wonder by who?

You are all owned by the same people or by people who work in collaberation with each other to scam others. If the hosting of pro-audio or national merchant center isn't enough. Look at the fact that Design4you's phone is listed is as belonging to National Merchant Center and resides at the exact same address.

But wait there's more.
They reside in the same suite too. So they lied above as well. And the proof is on design4you.com's website as well!

http://www.design4you.com/samples/nmcold/contacts.html

National Merchant Center International Headquarters:
3194-C Airport Loop Drive, Costa Mesa, CA 92626
[ click here for real map ]
Tel. 714-662-6800 Fax. 714-662-6801
e-mail: nmc@nationalmerchant.com

See the C in 3194 for design4you. See the C in National Merchant Center.

Give it up people. And everyone else please give them hell. Arrest them. Beat them. Do whatever you like.

It's a pity you don't pay more attention to who your victims are. I may be trusting but I'm not dumb.

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#12 Consumer Suggestion

Design4U are liars

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

POSTED: Friday, July 09, 2004

You can't get away from a reverse phone lookup.
The number you use for your phone calls is registered by the National Merchant Center. You don't only share the same building. You are them. Or does the National Merchant Center pay for your phone bill? Better change your phone listing info quick. ..dumb liars.

Well look what happened shortly after I posted my rebuttal. Digital Pro Audio's website changed. No more link? Didn't pay their contract you say? No scam speakers listed there anymore? Hmm...curious..you dumb liars.

All your companies have one thing in common. They scam people. I hope everyone catches you. I'm almost glad you ripped me off. Now everyone knows who you are and your days of scamming people will have major consequences. I think theres room enough to stick one head in each of the speaker holes.

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#11 UPDATE Employee

Design4you cannot be held responsible for websites they host!

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

POSTED: Thursday, July 08, 2004

Hi,

In response to www.digital-pro-audio.com "scam" allegations:

We are web-development company, meaning we HOST numerous companies websites! We NEVER received any court order or legal letter as to www.digital-pro-audio.com and WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE NOR RELATED to www.digital-pro-audio.com.

Also, I would like to add that named website had it's hosting period expired and contract WAS NOT renewed till further investigation on that matter.

After reviewing named website content we did not find any scam advertising nor fraudulent materials, website was made from printed brochures of the company and simply contains pictures of audio-speakers without any shopping cart or purchase information.

We are legitimate California Company and YES, we are located in the same big building as NMC which we lease on our own.

Thanks for your attention,
Terry Trident
Owner
[DELETED]

P.S. To Kamali and other people buying merchandise on the streets: how you expect to be protected when trying to buy merchandise from non-licensed stranger resellers?

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#10 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Design4you cannot be responsible for websites they host!

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

POSTED: Thursday, July 08, 2004

Hi,

In response to www.digital-pro-audio.com "scam" allegations:

We are web-development company, meaning we HOST numerous companies websites! We NEVER received any court order or legal letter as to www.digital-pro-audio.com and WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE NOR RELATED to www.digital-pro-audio.com.

Also, I would like to add that named website had it's hosting period expired and contract WAS NOT renewed till further investigation on that matter.

After reviewing named website content we did not find any scam advertising nor fraudulent materials, website was made from printed brochures of the company and simply contains pictures of audio-speakers without any shopping cart or purchase information.

We are legitimate California Company and YES, we are located in the same big building as NMC which we lease on our own.

Thanks for your attention,
Terry Trident
Owner

P.S. To Kamali and other people buying merchandise on the streets: how you expect to be protected when trying to buy merchandise from non-licensed stranger resellers?

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#9 Consumer Suggestion

Correction to last page

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

POSTED: Tuesday, June 15, 2004

I meant ripped off $300 for $50 speakers. Basically a big block of wood.

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#8 Consumer Suggestion

Scamming Revealed - This company is involved in numerous scams - See below

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

POSTED: Tuesday, June 15, 2004

I was driving down Mission Valley Road in San Diego. I was approached by men in a vehicle. I did not noticed but there probably was a lookout there as well.

They said they had gotten extra speakers and had to offload them within 45 minutes. I bought into it they looked very good, brand new in commercial quality box, sealed, packaged just like in a factory.

If you don't think this relates read on....

Well I was scammed for $300 for 50 speakers. I went online and typed 'Audiofile Scam' and oh my god the results that turned up.

It turns out that Audiofile Speakers along with many brands including Pro-Audio Speakers.

Well I went to Pro Audio's website
http://www.digital-pro-audio.com/

If you have your internet status bar up it pops up an address on a hover over the center image
http://www.design4you.com/u/dpa/

Hold on I'm going somewhere with this.

If you go to design4you's website guess what you find. The same contact address as the people here. http://www.design4you.com/main.asp?sid=11&bid=10

MAILING ADDRESS DESIGN4YOU
3194 Airport Loop Drive, Suite C
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
click here to view the map of location

BY PHONE
Toll free: 1 (800) 662-8448 (Ask for Design4you)
Local #: 1 (714) 662-6800 (Ask for Design4you)

Well I took that phone number and did a reverse phone lookup on it.
http://www.reversephonedirectory.com/

What showed up is this:
NATIONAL MERCHANT CENTER
3194 Airport Loop Dr
Costa Mesa, CA 92626-3405

Starting to be clearer? Who you are dealing with is a complex criminal organization. Involved in more scams than we can see here.

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#7 UPDATE Employee

Confirmation of Ripoff by NMC

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

POSTED: Tuesday, April 29, 2003

As a salesman for National Merchant Center I will say that statements and comments made by this merchant are true. As someone who knows the going ons of this company from the inside out, the issue so far described is just a tip of the iceberg. NMC has routinely charged its merchants past the cancellation date; it has set up specific structures to limit merchants ability to cancel out on the contract. The threat of collection agency is a common tactic to have a merchant either stay with a service or cancel for an amount mutually negotiated.

It is a regular practice of NMC to charge merchants exuberant fees for merchant clubs, annual fees and other so called services. As an example, the annual fee is set up in a way where a fee is charged in December and then in January. This is in effort to mask a total charge at once,adding an extra fee per year and minimizing the likelihood of merchant complaining from seeing one lump sum.

NMC has continuously charged merchants that are unaware or less than attentive of charges that are debited from their banking accounts. Contractually affirmed rates and transaction fees are routinely manipulated by cleverly termed increases. If you do not want to be another victim --- stay away. That applies to sales reps as well!!!!

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#6 REBUTTAL Individual responds

EFS National Bank aka Concord EFS aka Concord Computing

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

POSTED: Friday, April 11, 2003

The bank Mr. Belanko of National Merchant Center is refering to, Concord EFS is EFS National Bank, 2525 Horizon Lake Drive ste 120, Memphis, TN 38133.

This bank toghether with National Merchant Center kept on debiting China Petrol Bank of America account after they falselly claim the contract was cancelled by China Petrol.

EFS National Bank toghether with NMC did not send the requiered monthly statements to China Petrol to explain the charges. China Petrol sued National Merchant Center and asked for an injuction to stop EFS National Bank and National Merchant Center from debiting funds from said account.

They stoped in Octomber 2002. It is interesting to know how this EFS National Bank and its affiliate, NMC, claimed that China Petrol canceled the agreement in September of 2001, asked for sixteen thousand dollars (you read right, 16,000.00 US$), and in the same time they were debiting the processing fees from China Petrol, validating the fact the agreement was honored by China Petrol, monthly, by satisfying the contractual obligations which asked for a minimum processing fee.

China Petrol never cancelled the agreement. They were paying, didn't they? When asked to explain the charges, mr. Belanko of NMC first said they need eight weeks to mail the statements, but now, months later China Petrol did not receive any statements from Belanko. We wonder why?

Statements will show just what China Petrol said all this time: China Petrol never cancelled the contract. On April 9, 2003, China Petrol mailed the summons and complaint to EFS Bank in Tenesse, pursuant with California long-arm statute, CCP 410.10, 415.40, 416.10 and 417.20, and will bring EFS Bank to answer questions in California regarding this issue.

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#5 Consumer Suggestion

Avoid RIP-OFF in the future ..another company involved with NMC

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

POSTED: Wednesday, December 25, 2002

China Petrol, Inc. never cancelled the agreement. The merchant has an obligation to pay the monthly processing fees. China Petrol paid all the requested fees. Furthermore, we paid monthly despite the fact National Merchant Center cancelled on Sept, 2001. Then they cancelled again in April 2002, but, READ THIS, they kept billing China Petrol after, and China Petrol paid.

Then China brought legal action vs NMC and we requested an injunction against NMC debiting funds from China bank's account. They finally stopped in September 2002. By paying all monthly fees, alone is proof of continual contract. NMC never gave any reason for cancellation. They have none, except their own greed, the way the cancellation fee is structured they would have made more money by collecting cancellation fee than servicing the agreement. The fee is equal with the highest three months fees divided by three and the result charged monthly for the reminder of the agreement.

In our case is SIXTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS. Now they try to shift liability to an outsider sales rep. for not fixing the faulty equipment. They knew all along the equipment is defective, they send it broken and later they will claim breach of contract for inactivity.Merchants obligation, again is to pay the monthly fee what fee provides for less than minimum processing amount. There is no provision for inactivity here. You do not met the minimum, you pay the fee. PERIOD.(But) It works with small mom and pop stores, which have no funds to litigate expensive commercial law cases. In this case NMC bluff was called and they have an empty hand. China Petrol is now litigating in full force.

Our legal department considered the merits and decided to file suit. We have since filed with The Court. NMC failed to file a response in time and we asked for default. The contract was breached by National Merchant Center and also fraud was committed. We will prevail. We foresee a punitive award.

Other aspects of this case exists and are of crucial importance in determining our claim. We would like to list all here, but our attorneys withheld such, to protect the legal case.
OWNER OF SMALL VENTURE: read the reports about similar cases, listed here. Among ALL vendors you will deal with, and far apart on top of your cautions listing, put the credit card processor, the ISO they are named.

Ignore all the solicitors they will enter your store when they see a Grand Opening Sign, or other clue you are new in business. They will offer low rates and they'll show you how they can even lower your processing statement. If you bait, you are fair game.

After you sign, you have no protection against continue fee increase. And they WILL increase your fees every few months. They add new items, club fee, statement fee, batch fee, late batch fee, debit card fee, etc...

Read the agreement in TOTALITY, sign and have them sign EVERY PAGE, get written statement from their manager that fees will not increase, OR get a month by month agreement.Get a set of copies before the sales persons walks away with your signed agreement.

Keep a log of all communications, with detailed statements and full names. This is very important, if later you are to take them to court, or reach any settlement.

Also FTC, Consumer Protection Agency is investigating allegation of fraud by ISO, and recently they filed legal suit, froze assets and appointed executors against at least one ISO.
You are not alone as long as you make your case public.

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#4 Consumer Suggestion

Avoid RIP-OFF in the future ..another company involved with NMC

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

POSTED: Wednesday, December 25, 2002

China Petrol, Inc. never cancelled the agreement. The merchant has an obligation to pay the monthly processing fees. China Petrol paid all the requested fees. Furthermore, we paid monthly despite the fact National Merchant Center cancelled on Sept, 2001. Then they cancelled again in April 2002, but, READ THIS, they kept billing China Petrol after, and China Petrol paid.

Then China brought legal action vs NMC and we requested an injunction against NMC debiting funds from China bank's account. They finally stopped in September 2002. By paying all monthly fees, alone is proof of continual contract. NMC never gave any reason for cancellation. They have none, except their own greed, the way the cancellation fee is structured they would have made more money by collecting cancellation fee than servicing the agreement. The fee is equal with the highest three months fees divided by three and the result charged monthly for the reminder of the agreement.

In our case is SIXTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS. Now they try to shift liability to an outsider sales rep. for not fixing the faulty equipment. They knew all along the equipment is defective, they send it broken and later they will claim breach of contract for inactivity.Merchants obligation, again is to pay the monthly fee what fee provides for less than minimum processing amount. There is no provision for inactivity here. You do not met the minimum, you pay the fee. PERIOD.(But) It works with small mom and pop stores, which have no funds to litigate expensive commercial law cases. In this case NMC bluff was called and they have an empty hand. China Petrol is now litigating in full force.

Our legal department considered the merits and decided to file suit. We have since filed with The Court. NMC failed to file a response in time and we asked for default. The contract was breached by National Merchant Center and also fraud was committed. We will prevail. We foresee a punitive award.

Other aspects of this case exists and are of crucial importance in determining our claim. We would like to list all here, but our attorneys withheld such, to protect the legal case.
OWNER OF SMALL VENTURE: read the reports about similar cases, listed here. Among ALL vendors you will deal with, and far apart on top of your cautions listing, put the credit card processor, the ISO they are named.

Ignore all the solicitors they will enter your store when they see a Grand Opening Sign, or other clue you are new in business. They will offer low rates and they'll show you how they can even lower your processing statement. If you bait, you are fair game.

After you sign, you have no protection against continue fee increase. And they WILL increase your fees every few months. They add new items, club fee, statement fee, batch fee, late batch fee, debit card fee, etc...

Read the agreement in TOTALITY, sign and have them sign EVERY PAGE, get written statement from their manager that fees will not increase, OR get a month by month agreement.Get a set of copies before the sales persons walks away with your signed agreement.

Keep a log of all communications, with detailed statements and full names. This is very important, if later you are to take them to court, or reach any settlement.

Also FTC, Consumer Protection Agency is investigating allegation of fraud by ISO, and recently they filed legal suit, froze assets and appointed executors against at least one ISO.
You are not alone as long as you make your case public.

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#3 Consumer Suggestion

Avoid RIP-OFF in the future ..another company involved with NMC

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

POSTED: Wednesday, December 25, 2002

China Petrol, Inc. never cancelled the agreement. The merchant has an obligation to pay the monthly processing fees. China Petrol paid all the requested fees. Furthermore, we paid monthly despite the fact National Merchant Center cancelled on Sept, 2001. Then they cancelled again in April 2002, but, READ THIS, they kept billing China Petrol after, and China Petrol paid.

Then China brought legal action vs NMC and we requested an injunction against NMC debiting funds from China bank's account. They finally stopped in September 2002. By paying all monthly fees, alone is proof of continual contract. NMC never gave any reason for cancellation. They have none, except their own greed, the way the cancellation fee is structured they would have made more money by collecting cancellation fee than servicing the agreement. The fee is equal with the highest three months fees divided by three and the result charged monthly for the reminder of the agreement.

In our case is SIXTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS. Now they try to shift liability to an outsider sales rep. for not fixing the faulty equipment. They knew all along the equipment is defective, they send it broken and later they will claim breach of contract for inactivity.Merchants obligation, again is to pay the monthly fee what fee provides for less than minimum processing amount. There is no provision for inactivity here. You do not met the minimum, you pay the fee. PERIOD.(But) It works with small mom and pop stores, which have no funds to litigate expensive commercial law cases. In this case NMC bluff was called and they have an empty hand. China Petrol is now litigating in full force.

Our legal department considered the merits and decided to file suit. We have since filed with The Court. NMC failed to file a response in time and we asked for default. The contract was breached by National Merchant Center and also fraud was committed. We will prevail. We foresee a punitive award.

Other aspects of this case exists and are of crucial importance in determining our claim. We would like to list all here, but our attorneys withheld such, to protect the legal case.
OWNER OF SMALL VENTURE: read the reports about similar cases, listed here. Among ALL vendors you will deal with, and far apart on top of your cautions listing, put the credit card processor, the ISO they are named.

Ignore all the solicitors they will enter your store when they see a Grand Opening Sign, or other clue you are new in business. They will offer low rates and they'll show you how they can even lower your processing statement. If you bait, you are fair game.

After you sign, you have no protection against continue fee increase. And they WILL increase your fees every few months. They add new items, club fee, statement fee, batch fee, late batch fee, debit card fee, etc...

Read the agreement in TOTALITY, sign and have them sign EVERY PAGE, get written statement from their manager that fees will not increase, OR get a month by month agreement.Get a set of copies before the sales persons walks away with your signed agreement.

Keep a log of all communications, with detailed statements and full names. This is very important, if later you are to take them to court, or reach any settlement.

Also FTC, Consumer Protection Agency is investigating allegation of fraud by ISO, and recently they filed legal suit, froze assets and appointed executors against at least one ISO.
You are not alone as long as you make your case public.

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#2 Consumer Suggestion

Avoid RIP-OFF in the future ..another company involved with NMC

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

POSTED: Wednesday, December 25, 2002

China Petrol, Inc. never cancelled the agreement. The merchant has an obligation to pay the monthly processing fees. China Petrol paid all the requested fees. Furthermore, we paid monthly despite the fact National Merchant Center cancelled on Sept, 2001. Then they cancelled again in April 2002, but, READ THIS, they kept billing China Petrol after, and China Petrol paid.

Then China brought legal action vs NMC and we requested an injunction against NMC debiting funds from China bank's account. They finally stopped in September 2002. By paying all monthly fees, alone is proof of continual contract. NMC never gave any reason for cancellation. They have none, except their own greed, the way the cancellation fee is structured they would have made more money by collecting cancellation fee than servicing the agreement. The fee is equal with the highest three months fees divided by three and the result charged monthly for the reminder of the agreement.

In our case is SIXTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS. Now they try to shift liability to an outsider sales rep. for not fixing the faulty equipment. They knew all along the equipment is defective, they send it broken and later they will claim breach of contract for inactivity.Merchants obligation, again is to pay the monthly fee what fee provides for less than minimum processing amount. There is no provision for inactivity here. You do not met the minimum, you pay the fee. PERIOD.(But) It works with small mom and pop stores, which have no funds to litigate expensive commercial law cases. In this case NMC bluff was called and they have an empty hand. China Petrol is now litigating in full force.

Our legal department considered the merits and decided to file suit. We have since filed with The Court. NMC failed to file a response in time and we asked for default. The contract was breached by National Merchant Center and also fraud was committed. We will prevail. We foresee a punitive award.

Other aspects of this case exists and are of crucial importance in determining our claim. We would like to list all here, but our attorneys withheld such, to protect the legal case.
OWNER OF SMALL VENTURE: read the reports about similar cases, listed here. Among ALL vendors you will deal with, and far apart on top of your cautions listing, put the credit card processor, the ISO they are named.

Ignore all the solicitors they will enter your store when they see a Grand Opening Sign, or other clue you are new in business. They will offer low rates and they'll show you how they can even lower your processing statement. If you bait, you are fair game.

After you sign, you have no protection against continue fee increase. And they WILL increase your fees every few months. They add new items, club fee, statement fee, batch fee, late batch fee, debit card fee, etc...

Read the agreement in TOTALITY, sign and have them sign EVERY PAGE, get written statement from their manager that fees will not increase, OR get a month by month agreement.Get a set of copies before the sales persons walks away with your signed agreement.

Keep a log of all communications, with detailed statements and full names. This is very important, if later you are to take them to court, or reach any settlement.

Also FTC, Consumer Protection Agency is investigating allegation of fraud by ISO, and recently they filed legal suit, froze assets and appointed executors against at least one ISO.
You are not alone as long as you make your case public.

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#1 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Frivolous Accusations

AUTHOR: Roman - ()

POSTED: Thursday, October 24, 2002

A contract was signed on November 2, 2000 between China Petrol, Inc. (Merchant) and National Merchant Center (NMC). This contract has a three year term and an early cancellation fee which is clearly stated on the contract that Mr. Belicius wife, Al Ping Lu, signed.

Concord EFS is a legitimate processing bank located in Tennessee. They route the money for the merchants transactions and place it into the merchants account.

A former sales representative of one of our outside independent sales organization had provided China Petrol with the credit card processing equipment. NMC has no knowledge of any attempts made by the Merchant to have the equipment repaired and NMC was never contacted with regards to repairing any of the merchants equipment. If we had been contacted we would have handled the repairs, as it is in our best interests that the merchant continue processing.

Mr. Beliciu was to have received a copy of his contract at that time that it was signed as the contract is a 2 part form, the white copy the sales rep. sends to NMC and the Merchant is to keep the yellow copy. The only request that Mr. Beliciu had made for a copy of the contract was during his September 2001 phone call when he stated he wished to cancel, at that time the account rep. explained that there was an early cancellation fee and Mr. Beliciu asked for the contract to be faxed to him.

After a phone call from Mr. Beliciu on September 18, 2001 during which he stated he wished to cancel the account and refused to send a letter to that affect, NMC began the cancellation process. The first letter that Mr. Beliciu refers to (dated November 9, 2001) is a form letter sent to all cancelled merchants. The wording of that form letter has since been changed to avoid similar confusion. The early cancellation fee was changed when Mr. Beliciu made us aware that he was still currently active with Concord EFS and being charged the monthly processing fees. At that time, during the month of April 2002, we cancelled China Petrol with Concord EFS and subsequently sent a second letter with the amended early cancellation fee total. After several conversations between Mr. Beliciu and the account representative, it was made aware that Mr. Beliciu would not pay the early cancellation fee and NMC in turn sent China Petrol to collections.

National Merchant Center did not breach the Contract as it clearly states in the Contract that it can be terminated by NMC at anytime, for any reason deemed appropriate by NMC. The contract was terminated with the EFS on April 24, 2002 after remaining inactive for over six months and with our understanding that China Petrol wished to cancel.

China Petrol states that he was still able to process debit cards and yet he chose not to for a period of 8 months, coincidently that 8 months began during September 2001, the same month the Mr. Beliciu called and cancelled. Mr. Beliciu resumed processing transactions in April 2002 after he received letters from Cornerstone Credit, the collection agency that China Petrol was placed with when they refused to pay the early termination fee. During the time period from 9/01 and 4/02 China Petrol was able to process transactions and it was their choice not to. Another matter equally ironic is that currently, Mr. Beliciu is in the process of engaging NMC in a lawsuit regarding their inability to process during said time period and the losses that they feel they incurred due to this inability. Mr. Belicius claims are extremely contradictory.

During a May 14, 2002 phone conversation between Mr. Beliciu and the account rep stated he would end the legal proceedings if he was given monetary compensation for the losses that he felt were incurred because he wasnt able to process transactions. At that time, he was informed that NMC would not compensate him, as it was not the fault of the National Merchant Center that he did not process credit or debit cards.

Mr. Belicius demeanor during the various phone conversations that have taken place beginning in 9/01 to the present has been consistently rude and irate.

The bottom line:
National Merchant Center performed all of the agreed upon services outlined in the contract. China Petrol had the ability to process credit card transactions from November 2, 2000 to April 23, 2002. It was the merchants choice to not process transactions, so any financial loss suffered by Merchant is the sole responsibility of said Merchant. As far as this being a scam, all locations and contractual obligations are clearly stated on the contract.

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