Fortune Learning Systems LLC. Sued by FTC

The following is a news report on an intricate set of companies that have scammed thousands of people, including me when I first started online. Luckily, I pulled the pin and saved all my data before they were shut down, but not before losing a great deal of money that I could ill afford to lose. I believe in naming and shaming those that prey on the uninitiated. They are blood-suckers who deserve to be trodden into the gutter with the rest of the filth.

Ivy Capital Inc. and 29 co-defendants including Fortune Learning Systems LLC. allegedly have taken more than $40 million from people who paid thousands of dollars believing Ivy Capital would help them develop their own Internet businesses and earn up to $10,000 per month or more.

According to the FTC’s complaint, Ivy Capital’s telemarketers asked consumers how much credit they had on their credit cards and then talked them into using a substantial portion of their available credit to purchase a business coaching program. But the promised products and services were worthless, the complaint alleged. Ivy Capital’s “expert” coaches lacked the promised knowledge and experience, its website-building software programs did not work properly, and the lawyers and accountants the defendants said would provide assistance were nonexistent. Consumers paid up to $20,000 for a business coaching program and related products and services but got very little in return.

The FTC has made it clear today that it plans to step up its ongoing campaign against scammers who falsely promise guaranteed jobs and opportunities to “be your own boss” to consumers who are struggling with unemployment and diminished incomes as a consequence of the economic downturn.

“Operation Empty Promises,” a multi-agency law enforcement initiative today announced more than 90 enforcement actions, including three new FTC cases and developments in seven other matters, 48 criminal actions by the Department of Justice (many of which involved the assistance of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service), seven additional civil actions by the Postal Inspection Service, and 28 actions by state law enforcement agencies.

In a press conference at the FTC, David Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, was joined by Tony West, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division of the Department of Justice; Greg Campbell, Deputy Chief Inspector of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper; and a California consumer who had bought into a program to start his own Internet business.

“The victims of these frauds are our neighbors – people who are trying to make an honest living,” said David C. Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. ”Under pressure to make ends meet, they risked their limited financial resources in response to the promise of a job, an income – a chance at a profitable home-based business. But these turned out to be empty promises – and the people who counted on them ended up with high levels of frustration and even higher levels of debt.”

*Ivy Capital Inc. defendants – The defendants are Kyle G. Kirschbaum, John H. Harrison, Steven E. Lyman, Benjamin E. Hoskins, Christopher M. Zelig, Steven J. Sonnenberg, James G. Hanchett, Joshua F. Wickman, Ivy Capital Inc., Fortune Learning System LLC, Fortune Learning LLC, Vianet Inc., Enrich Wealth Group LLC, Business Development Division LLC, Nevada Corporate Division Inc., Nevada Corporate Division LLC, Credit Repair Division Inc., Credit Repair Division LLC, Tax Planning Division LLC, Zyzac Commerce Solutions Inc., 3 Day MBA LLC, The Shipper LLC, doing business as, Global Finance Group LLC and Virtual Profit LLC, Dream Financial, ICI Development Inc., Ivy Capital LLC, Logic Solutions LLC, Oxford Debt Holdings LLC, Revsynergy LLC, and Sell It Vizions LLC. The relief defendants are Cherrytree Holdings LLC, Oxford Financial LLC, S&T Time LLC, Virtucon LLC, Curva LLC, Mowab Inc., Kierston Kirschbaum, Melyna Harrison, Tracy Lyman, and Leanne Hoskins.

NOTE: The Commission authorizes the filing of a complaint when it has “reason to believe” that the law has been or is being violated, and it appears to the Commission that a proceeding is in the public interest. The complaint is not a finding or ruling that the defendants have actually violated the law. The consent orders are for settlement purposes only and do not constitute an admission by the defendants of a law violation. A consent order is subject to court approval and has the force of law when signed by the District Court judge.

Fortune Learning Systems,,, and numerous other websites and domain servers have since been shut down. I still had one domain name with and was not advised of the shut down. Everything just disappeared overnight.

Even as late as last month, I received a phone call from the States, telling me that the reason I couldn’t make any money from my web sites was that I didn’t have an LLC company, and for just $7,800 they would set one up for me, and for a small (undisclosed) annual fee, they would submit my tax returns in the US, even though I live in Australia. I declined their kind offer.

Is it any wonder that when I say I am an Internet Marketer, most people automatically associate me as a Scam Merchant?

The quicker we run these bastards out of town the better.


4 Responses to “Fortune Learning Systems LLC. Sued by FTC”

  1. Don, these scum of the earth scamsters should have all their assets confiscated and be put inside to rot with the keys thrown away.

    For Fortune Learning Systems LLC read most so called ‘gurus’.

    A-U-L, UK
    Bill Murney recently posted..Pembrokeshire Coast PathMy Profile

  2. Thanks Bill. It seems that even in America, where all’s fair in making $$$, the majority are getting sick of the scams. Or is that because Russia and China have taken over as the scam capitals of the world?


  3. Hi Don,

    I found you through Bills blog. This is an interesting topic and you mention about those ‘scum’ and I agree that the scammers should be closed down. However I also believe this is a tough topic because a lot of honest good companies could be snared as well – I’m talking about the good people who are legitimately helping others to grow their business online at a fair price. Information is power, and good information in my opinion is worth paying for.

    Hope to see you over at my blog sometimes Don!


    John recently posted..Googles Plus One Button & Search Engine OptimizationMy Profile

  4. Hi John,

    You are correct in many ways. Does one bad egg make the whole basket bad? Of course not. But in the eyes of the customer, it makes it quite probable and, therefore, less likely to buy.


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